As an early 2013 product launch, Cartier has expanded its Calibre de Cartier collection by adding a chronograph model to the previously time-only line. As with the earlier models, the new chronographs feature a fully in-house manufactured caliber, here a column-wheel chronograph (1904-CH MC) with a central vertical clutch, that is placed into a round 42 mm steel or gold case, gem-set or not, and on a steel or gold bracelet or a leather strap.
Unveiled by Cartier’s highly acclaimed head of fine watchmaking Carole Forestier-Kasapi, recent recipient of the 2012 Geneva Grand Prix award for best watchmaker, the Calibre de Cartier Chronograph features a double-barrel power source that offers a more consistent torque than a single barrel model might during the 48-hour power reserve. In addition, Cartier has chosen to integrate a linear return-to-zero hammer in this new movement in order to guarantee the instant, simultaneous and precise return of all the chronograph hands, whatever the force exerted on the push-piece.
Visible through the watch’s transparent sapphire-crystal case back, the upper bridges and oscillating weight are adorned with traditional Côtes de Genève decoration. On the dial, the three-date aperture has moved from 3 o’clock (on the previous models) to 6 o’clock here, balancing the new chronograph subdials. The crown is seven-sided, and on the gold model is adorned with a faceted sapphire; it is made of spinel on the steel model.
Tourbillon with Jumping Second Time Zone
Another new release is the Ballon Bleu de Cartier tourbillon with double jumping second time zone watch, which has been designed like a regulator. With its central minute hand and its two jumping hour counters – one for local time and the other for starting-point time – it offers something quite new for world travelers. The subtle retrograde mechanism allows two fully synchronized (yet individually adjustable) jumping hours to be displayed. The first, controlled by the winding crown, is fitted into the side of the watchcase. The tip of the blued-steel hand in the large counter with Roman numerals shows the time at the starting point. The second, controlled by the pushbutton set into the case at 10 o’clock, indicates the local time.
The 46 mm watch is made in white gold or pink gold and features a dial with a satin-finish, openwork grid with sunray effect and black transfer Arabic and Roman numerals. Hands are sword-shaped and in blued steel. Inside is Cartier’s own Caliber 9456 MC, a manual-winding movement with certified Geneva Seal, flying tourbillon with carriage in the form of a C and two instant jumping time zones. Fifty pieces of each gold color will be offered.
Perpetual Calendar Chronograph
The Rotonde de Cartier Perpetual Calendar Chronograph watch features two specialized indications: a perpetual calendar that continuously indicates long periods of time and a new column-wheel chronograph caliber that, on demand, measures much shorter periods, such as brief events, with great precision. The calendar module incorporates a retrograde hand, indicating days of the week at 6 o’clock, as well as a specific mechanism for displaying the date, which is indicated by a hand on the edge of the dial. The watch’s three calendar displays are controlled by rapid correctors incorporated into the middle of the case. These enable the wearer to easily reset the information on the dial in case this entirely new Manufacture automatic chronograph caliber stops.
The 42 mm chronograph features an in-line, flexible lever that reduces stress on the bearings of the hand shafts when the displays are reset to zero. And because it is essential today to ensure accuracy in short-period timing, the watchmakers of the Cartier Manufacture at la Chaux-de-Fonds have chosen to use the latest generation of vertical clutch that allows timings to start with no hand jump and to operate without affecting the torque of the caliber. Inside is the 9423 MC, an in-house manual-winding movement with a perpetual calendar chronograph.
The Crash watch has an asymmetrically and artistically distorted dial conjuring the effects of a minor collision and therein finding its name. First introduced in 1967, it has become a collector’s favorite, having been produced in various renditions and in very small numbers over the years. For 2013, it appears in four new designs, each with a delicate bracelet in white or pink gold. As a reference to its year of creation, just 267 numbered pieces in white or pink gold and 67 numbered watches with gem-set bracelets, also in white or pink gold, are available. The cases feature 15 brilliant-cut diamonds totaling approximately 2.15 carats; the gem-set bracelets each sparkle with 471 brilliant-cut diamonds totaling 4.27 carats The Crash watch measures 38.45 mm by 25.5 mm and is powered by a manual-winding movement.
Cartier revives a centuries-old goldsmith’s technique called granulation, which involves creating tiny spheres from threads of gold that are cut, heated over a flame, then assembled one by one and fused with the underlying plate to create a design. The motif—in this case a panther’s head—emerges in gorgeous relief on the dial of this Rotonde de Cartier. The 42 mm watch features an 18-karat yellow gold case set with 306 brilliant-cut diamonds totaling 3.63 carats. The semi-matte black alligator leather strap has an 18-karat gold folding clasp set with 43 diamonds. An in-house manual winding movement, the 9601 MC, powers each of the twenty pieces in this limited edition.
Tortue Multiple Time Zone
Controlled by a pushbutton at 2 o’clock, the modular in-house self-winding movement 9914 MC of the Tortue Multiple Time Zone watch allows the wearer to see the time in cities corresponding to 24 time zones, also taking into account seasonal time changes. The names of these cities appear in a window on the side of the white or pink gold watch case. The time at the current location is displayed by the central hands on the dial, while the time at the journey’s starting point is indicated in a semi-circular aperture in the lower half of center by a day/night hand incorporating symbols for the sun and the moon. Perfect for the world traveler, the watch, which comes on a leather strap, has a 48-hour power reserve. A diamond-set version is also available.
Art of Illusion
Inspired by illusion and veiled complexity—as well as its mystery clocks of the early twentieth century—Cartier is introducing Les Heures Mysterieuses comprising two new creations. Powered by the 9981 MC in-house manual-winding movement, the Rotonde de Cartier Mysterious Hours uses four anti-reflective crystal disks to display the hour and minutes with hands that seem to float in space. The 42 mm case is available in 18-karat pink or white gold on a brown or black alligator strap. The Rotonde de Cartier Mysterious Double Tourbillon uses the 9454 MC in-house manual-winding movement. The flying tourbillon appears to be completely ungrounded, with no visible connection to the gear train. Employing a sapphire crystal disk with an aperture the size of the tourbillon, it gives the illusion of a cage in a state of “levitation.” The 45 mm watch has a platinum case with a black alligator strap and 52 hours of power reserve.
Les Heures Fabuleuses
A menagerie of 41 jewelry timepieces, Les Heures Fabuleuses combines magical design and fine watchmaking. The collection’s theme, “This is not a watch,” refers to the transformative powers of the pieces. A diamond-studded watch, for example, may be embellished with a gemstone-set and enamel motif that transforms into a brooch. Other examples from this collection include metamorphosis from sundry watch designs to a tiara, a pendant or a bracelet. Shown is a white gold watch with a mother-of-pearl dial.