Cartier’s new {manufacture} chronograph

January 2013

Calibre de Cartier Chronograph
Calibre de Cartier Chronograph

Cartier will once again be presenting a number of exciting new products at the SIHH in 2013 but the brand understandably does not want to overwhelm us by presenting everything at the same time. But if the appetiser is anything to go by, the brand is once again set to surpass itself at the show in January, since Cartier has unveiled nothing less than its first in-house self-winding chronograph calibre, the 1904-CH MC.

Aficionados will note the column wheel, which is carefully revealed through an open-worked bridge section visible through the transparent case back and sets the movement apart as a chronograph of distinction. But Cartier’s attention to detail went beyond this more visible confirmation of the movement’s quality. The use of a vertical coupling, for example, ensures no loss of power and eliminates any jumps by the chronograph seconds hand when the chronograph is started or stopped. Furthermore, the return-to-zero mechanism, which usually rotates, is in this case linear, which guarantees an instantaneous and precise return to zero, regardless of the pressure applied to the chronograph pusher. A degree of flexibility has also been incorporated into the heart cams on the chronograph counters themselves in order to reduce stress on their axles. The movement operates at 4Hz and, thanks to twin mainspring barrels, offers a power reserve of 48 hours.

The new movement finds its first application in a 42mm Calibre de Cartier case in stainless steel or 18-carat red gold with alligator leather straps or metal bracelets. Although the two chronograph counters at 3 and 9 o’clock confer a slightly sportier touch to the dial, nothing of the traditional Cartier elegance is lost. An oversized XII Roman numeral and the Cartier name dominate the top of the dial. The Roman numerals continue around the upper half of the dial, switching to baton-shaped hour markers for the lower half, with a sectorial date aperture at 6 o’clock. The chronograph uniform is completed by an elegant railway-style minute track that is engraved on the bezel.

Signature elements such as the sword-shaped hands and the seven-sided crown adorned with a faceted blue synthetic spinel ensure that this new timepiece remains unmistakably Cartier and acts as a fine ambassador for Cartier’s new models in 2013.

Cartier's new {manufacture} chronograph

Source: Europa Star December - January 2012-13 Magazine Issue

See the other SIHH 2013 previews in this issue: