You will likely be aware that last year Tag Heuer was celebrating the 60th anniversary of the Carrera, launching a whole suite of celebratory watches such as the Carrera Chronograph Glassbox. Now, for 2024, they’re continuing to explore the Glassbox style by introducing a pair of watches with alternative Carrera displays beyond the standard tricompax layout. They’re the Tag Heuer Carrera Chronograph Glassbox Dato and Tourbillon, both featuring teal as their signature colour.
Tag Heuer Carrera Chronograph Glassbox Dato
Up first is the Tag Heuer Carrera Chronograph Glassbox Dato, which is based on the vintage Dato layout. This version of the Dato dates back to 1968 when the date window was moved from 12 o’clock to the 9 o’clock position you see here. It makes for an asymmetric display with the date window opposite the 30-minute timer subdial, a layout that earned the nickname “cyclops”, a sort of cousin to the “big eye”. It’s not quite so overtly sporty as the standard Carrera Chronograph with more emphasis on refinement and class.
In that effort I think the Carrera Chronograph Glassbox Dato is very successful, largely thanks to the gorgeous teal colouration and circular brushing across the dial. The particular shade was first used by Tag Heuer in a limited edition in 2021, although the inspiration of it is arguably much older as a slightly paler shade of teal was used on the chronograph counter of vintage Skippers – a colour scheme that was recently revived.
Housed inside the 39mm steel case is the Calibre TH20-07, an alternative name for the Heuer 02. It’s a really solid movement with an impressive 80-hour power reserve and is used in a huge number of Tag Heuer’s chronographs. The high quality movement helps to justify the £6,000) price.
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Tag Heuer Carrera Chronograph Glassbox Tourbillon
If the Dato is a pared back version of the Carrera, then the Tourbillon pushes the design in the other direction, racing into the realms of haute horology. Instead of the small seconds indicator normally located at 6 on the Carrera’s tricompax display, it has a tourbillon. Tourbillons are constantly rotating cages containing the watch’s escapement that are designed to counteract the effects of gravity. They also happen to look fantastic like a tiny engine whirring away in the heart of the movement.
The movement here is again the Heuer 02, but this time the TH 20-09 version with 65-hour power reserve. It’s housed in a slightly larger case than the Dato at a diameter of 42mm but follows broadly the same style with a sweeping round shape from lug to lug. It also sports the signature glassbox sapphire that adds a slight retro aesthetic with its curved shape.
As for pricing and availability, the Tag Heuer Carrera Chronograph Glassbox Tourbillon is £20,950, not a huge amount in the realms of tourbillons, especially considering Tag Heuer’s entry point is steadily rising these days. It will be available in May 2024. To me, the key thing with these releases is the fact that they confirm the new Glassbox design is here to stay, which is absolutely great news because it’s the best-looking Carrera around. Seeing it with a variety of display options and complications is a huge bonus.
Price and Specs:
More details at Tag Heuer.