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That's good but there are more...

Rodriguez and His Carrera ? ? ? Posted By: Jeff Stein Date: 11/2/04 18:23 GMT


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

1] To me, the watch looks really nice (and that is the most important aspect of this).
Agreed on the appearance of the watch being first and foremost. I don't believe I said or stated anything negative about the watches appearance. I like it, I like it a lot. Might even buy one. The only thing I don't like about the black dial is the black on white day indication. I'd prefer white on black. Which I'd likely have a watchmaker change were I to buy one.
1 (cont)] 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 -- ??)
This model's resemblance to various Omega Speedmaster models has been noted previously here and elsewhere. Some people have called it an outright copy, which I think might be a little strong, but there is a resemblance that's for sure. I do hope it wakes the gnomes in Bienne that if they don't make attractive models like this be prepared for other to do so.
2] 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.
I am fairly confident that many of us could come up with "classic" Heuer models both Race-Track named and not, that possess similar clean legible designs.
2 (cont)] 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,
All the more reason to treat it with care and use it judiciously.

2 (cont)] so I will forgive TAG-Heuer for using this name on the new 7750 chronograph.
That's your option...
  • However, I feel that the recent "Classic" Monaco and the Autavia releases have kept fairly close in spirit to their vintage counterparts. TAG-Heuer has seemed content to play around with the Carrera name first with ETA/Dubois-Depraz models, and now the Valjoux. Personally I am a fan of and a great proponent of the vintage Carrera line and I'd like to see TAG-Heuer take better care of this premier model name and treat it with similar respect as they have with the Autavia and Monaco re-releases. There are plenty of other names that they could blow the dust off from their past, or create new classics they could use. The Carrera line is way over complicated already, they should simplify it and not wear out the name.
3] 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.
Agreed and absolutely...
3 (cont)] 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.
Agreed and absolutely... I wonder if there is some problem with the Rodriguez estate that prevents this from happening?
3 (cont)] 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??
I like that lineup... Perhaps Emerson Fittapaldi, James Hunt or Niki Lauda for Monza, and how about Californian Dan Gurney for a revived Pasadena?

Thoughts from our readers?
My thoughts are there are so many tracks out there that could be honored by having a watch named after it, and so many retired drivers who could serve as ambassadors for the brand. Andretti, Mears, Atwood, Heywood, etc. who wouldn't mind making a little money by letting their name be used for this purpose. I wish TAG-Heuer would take a step back and see that they could be doing it differently and I believe better.

Chuck Maddox

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Non-Pasadena Pasadena Stainless 7750

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