TAG Heuer is one of the most popular brands for people who are looking to get their first Swiss-made luxury watch, or as TAG calls them, “modern hipsters.” And amongst all of the TAG Heuer watches, the Carrera Calibre 16 Chronograph watches have some of the broadest appeal to the entry-level demographic. 2017 marks the 10th anniversary of the Carrera Calibre 16 Chronograph and TAG Heuer is bolstering the line with a lighter-weight new model in black titanium. Join us as we take a closer look at the new TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 16 Day-Date Chronograph Black Titanium watch.
As you can see, the new TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 16 Day-Date Chronograph Black Titanium does not deviate greatly from the existing models. What’s new is the introduction of the titanium with a black PVD coating along with a black ceramic bezel and the beige font tachymeter scale.
Case size remains the same at 43mm, but it is now rendered in the previously mentioned Grade 2 titanium with a micro-blasted black PVD finish. The bezel is still just as thin, which accentuates the dial even more, and it is made of black ceramic and features a beige tachymeter scale, which complements the dial very nicely (more on the dial later). The lugs have thick bevels and arch downwards steeply to give a better fit for those with thinner wrists. Water resistance also remains the same at 100 meters, which means wearers can take the watch swimming with no problems. Thanks to its titanium construction, the new TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 16 Day-Date Chronograph Black Titanium watch feels light and comfy on the wrist.
For those familiar with TAG Heuer’s Carrera Calibre 16 Day-Date Chronograph watches, you will see that not much has changed on the dial. The numerals, arrangements, and wordings all remain intact, but it is now mostly rendered in vintage beige – or you could look at it as sandy tan. It seems like TAG Heuer is taking this color scheme and running, as one can’t help but be reminded of the TAG Heuer Aquaracer 300 Caliber 5 Titanium WAY208C (reviewed here) with a very similar set of colors and materials. Can we look forward to more such sandy versions in other TAG lines, perhaps?
One unique thing about the Carrera Calibre 16 Day-Date Chronograph is that it has large minute indexes in place of the more usual hour markers. This is to help wearers time events under an hour more conveniently. On this watch, minute indexes are hand applied and have been coated with a thick paint of beige Super-LumiNova. The hands are faceted and have a mix of polished and sandblasted finishes, and they too are painted with beige Super-LumiNova.
This beige color scheme extends elsewhere around the dial too. The chronograph hands, and the words “automatic chronograph” around the running seconds sub-dial at 9 o’clock, along with the phrase “Calibre 16” denoting the movement within just under the day and date windows are painted in beige as well. So to offer contrast and ensure legibility, the running seconds hand is white, and so are the markers in all three sub-dials. The markings on the minute track around the flange is white as well. To complement the watch, it comes with a dusty brown distressed calfskin strap with a matching micro-blasted black PVD Grade 2 titanium folding buckle.
The result is a somewhat monochromatic look, but one that is quite harmonious and attractive, since black and beige go well together. One could say that it looks somewhat vintagey, but for me, it comes across as sandy and it gives the watch a very nomadic and desert vibe.
The TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 16 Day-Date Chronograph Black Titanium watch features a sapphire case back that allows wearers to gaze into the watch’s innards and admire the Calibre 16 movement. The Calibre 16 is TAG Heuer’s own designation for the ever reliable ETA 7750 automatic chronograph movement. Though it may not be an in-house movement, the ETA 7750 is a movement with all the niceties one would expect from a modern watch – including rapid day and date correction and a rate of 4Hz. It has also been in service for decades and has been proven to be a very reliable and accurate movement, and can be regulated to run within COSC specifications. For me, its somewhat short power reserve of 42 hours is a little on the low side.
This new TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 16 Day-Date Chronograph Black Titanium watch looks drastically different from the other Carrera Calibre 16 Day-Date Chronograph watches and is clearly a sign of TAG Heuer’s intent to appeal to a different and younger crowd. I’m not sure if I belong to TAG Heuer’s target demographic, but the colors used here are very atypical and unorthodox, and I think it works. For me, this is a really handsome watch. The new TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 16 Day-Date Chronograph Black Titanium watch will likely be priced just around $4,500. tagheuer.com