The distinctive Tag Heuer replica was just the one I look forward to seeing, I’m a total fan fan of TAG Heuer’s skeletonised and modular take on their classic Carrera, but you must believe that at 45mm across, it takes certain amount of wrist or confidence to pull it off. That the 43mm version will suit more wrists is good news, the fact that there were new colors in the offing only sealed the deal.
There are quite a large number of new Heuer 43mm models, including versions with solid dials, and the very cool black ceramic model. But I was most drawn the titanium models with skeletonised dials, offered in three color ways: black, blue and a particularly delicious brown. All three colors are provided on a titanium bracelet, alligator strap or rubber. Size and color notwithstanding, these new replica Tag Heuer Carrera 01s are virtually the same as previous versions – Heuer 01 movement, 12-part modular case and that richly skeletonised dial. As we talked in the past, the changes in size and color make a huge difference.
The original version clocks in at 45mm across, and wears high. Of course, the titanium case construction and relatively short lugs make it light and tight on the wrist, but it’s still a big watch – too big for many people. This version doesn’t have that problem. At 43mm it’s still a large watch, but not overwhelmingly so. This small change alone will please a lot of people, and I’d be surely interested to see which size is more popular with customers in a year’s time. One concern with a smaller diameter is that you lose some of the balance, depth and richness of the dial design – this is a real concern on a skeletonised dial, which is full of intricacies. Thankfully though, not much is lost. The detail at the centre of the dial is still the same, only the ‘framing’ is altered, with a narrower outer ring and shorter hour batons. I do think the indices on the 45mm version are a little more balanced, but that’s a minor detail.
The other aspect is just the color. Not only is the bezel now offered in brown or blue (as well as black), but dial details have been picked out in color as well – adding comparison, drama and a whole lot of character. Both replica watches are especially suited to the leather straps, and are particularly sophisticated packages. While the new Heuer 01 43mm versions lack the drama and excitement of top line releases like the Autavia, they’re an excellent, wearer-friendly evolution of replica TAG Heuer’s bold new look.