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Rodriguez and His Carrera ? ? ?


working through the three issues raised in the "Subject" line of your message, here's how I see it:

  • To me, the watch looks really nice (and that is the most important aspect of this). Good looking design; a favorite movement; and the watch itself is consistent with a classic / vintage look (though there are legitimate questions as to whether the vintage original that inspired this one is the Heuer or the Omega -- ??)

  • The name "Carrera" may not be ideal for a 7750 powered chronograph, but this design is consistent with certain elements that Carrera represents -- legibility and clean, minimalist design; black and white (silver) color scheme. The Carrera name seems to be the best one that Heuer has right now (from the marketing perspective), and they are celebrating the Carrera's 40th anniversary this year, so I will forgive TAG-Heuer for using this name on the new 7750 chronograph.

  • And now we face the tough question of the Ambassador. I agree that this new chronograph does not evoke the imagery of Fangio. The 1950's were Fangio's glory years in racing, and this watch draws little, if anything, from that era. According to the book "Mastering Time" (page 96), Jack Heuer's interest in the Mexican race and the "Carrera" name actually stemmed from a conversation with Pedro Rodriguez, while they were attending a Sebring race. Pedro told Jack Heuer about the Mexican races, and the name stuck with Jack Heuer when he returned to Switzerland . . . and along came the Carrera. So the real ambassador would be . . . Pedro Rodriguez. (Also interesting that he was a close friend and teammate of Siffert.) My ideal line-up of Ambassadors might be as follows: Fangio for the Targa Florio; Siffert for the Autavia; McQueen for the Monaco; and Rodriguez for the Carrera!! But will it sell??
Thoughts from our readers?



: Fangio's Carrera ? ? ? Posted By: Jeff Stein
: Date: 11/1/04 02:13 GMT

: I spotted this print ad for the new Carrera
: earlier today, and thought that it was kind
: of interesting.

: The caption of the ad, at the bottom left, is
: "Fangio and His Carrera Tachymeter
: Chronograph".

: Wanting to explore this Fangio / Carrera
: connection, I went to the TAG-Heuer website,
: where I found the following description of
: Fangio, as the "Ambassador" of the
: new Carrera: What are TAG Heuer
: ambassadors made of? Forget the usual
: clichés - grit, self-possession,
: determination and so on - the qualities that
: makes these people extraordinary cannot be
: satisfactorily translated into dictionary
: terms. It's not that these qualities are
: indescribable. It's just that the
: description pales compared to the
: performance.

: The Argentinian Juan-Emanuel Fangio, five
: times Formula 1 world champion, competed in
: every type of motor racing event and holds
: the all time record for the number of
: championship titles. This particularly
: gifted and daring driver arrived in Europe
: in 1948 and just one year later had won
: seven Grands Prix at the wheel of a Maserati
: ! In 1953 he drove a Lancia to victory in
: the Carrera Panamericana, an exhausting
: marathon for both cars and drivers.
: Extending over more than 3000 km. in Mexico,
: the race was a perfect fit with the wild
: frontiers of the new continent.

: As a tribute to this epic race and the great
: Argentinian champion, TAG Heuer launched the
: "Carrera", in 1964. It quickly
: became the brand's flagship model. With its
: sporty look, its essentially functional
: nature and the understated elegance of its
: design, it remains a landmark in the
: company's history.

: The new Carrera, powered by the Valjoux 7750
: movement, will be available with either a
: black or silver dial.

: So what do "we" think of this
: connection drawn between Fangio, the Carrera
: Panamericana road race, Ok, I can accept
: the connection between Fangio and the
: Carrera Panamericana... I don't have a
: problem with that...

: the original Carrera chronograph and this new
: chronograph? To borrow a phrase I heard
: used (albeit less correctly) elsewhere
: lately...

: Wrong name for the wrong watch with the wrong
: ambassador.

: There has never been a 7750 based Carrera
: before. I don't feel it's a historically
: proper "Classic" watch watch
: either. If anything this watch seems to be a
: homage piece to the Speedmaster.

: A more proper name for a large 7750 Based
: chronograph would be Pasadena: I think
: there are plenty of other racing related
: names that could be tapped for a new watch
: from TAG-Heuer... Pasadena is the most
: obvious choice for this watch, but
: Riverside, Sebring, Laguna Seca, or any one
: of a number of other racing circuits
: (Mosport, Nurbergring, etc.) would have been
: better choices in my opinion. In fact you
: could pick a 1 mile long NASCAR circuit like
: Phoenix, Dover, Milwaukee, Nazareth, Pike's
: Peak, for example and the Tachy bezel can by
: used for converting lap times...

: I remain hopeful that Heuer will resume
: production of the Pasadena in it's old case,
: so I hope they save Pasadena for that.

: Do we "buy it"? I might buy one
: some day, but not because of the Marketing,
: or some imagined Fangio connection, but
: rather because of it's own merits.

: I am interested to see how our readers react
: to the new chronograph and the ad campaign.

: Jeff I like the watch. I'm not wowed by
: the marketing. Frankly I could do a better
: job. So could Jeff, and I suspect a number
: of others here in the forum.

: -- Chuck


: Chuck Maddox


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: ” Chronographs, like many things in
: life, only improve with age… ”

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