1. Its style
A bold, urbane aesthetic makes Drive de Cartier a remarkably handsome timepiece. Featuring a face that commands attention, as well as a cushion-shaped case and the maison’s signature use of sizeable Roman numerals, the watch makes a strong and confident statement, while retaining a sophisticated, somewhat vintage charm. Highly defined proportions highlight the modern and masculine guilloche dial, which is available in white, gold or black, with a rose gold or steel case. Sword-shaped hands, in rose gold or blue steel, inject a contemporary touch to the overall elegance of the dial. Leather straps are crafted from semi-matte alligator skin, and are available in both black and brown.
2. Its shape
In keeping with its tradition of producing distinctively shaped timepieces, the maison heads in a new direction with Drive de Cartier. A classic outlook and non-traditional design are fused in one of the defining characteristics of this timepiece – its case. Crafted in a cushion shape, it is ever so slightly rounded, with taut curves and soft corners. While perhaps unexpected, the uniquely understated nature of the shape offsets the striking details of the dial. Notably wide, but comfortably thin, the case gives the watch an edge, and while it will be an appealing addition to the collections of connoisseurs, it is equally fit for daily use. Cartier’s ability to take the cushion shape into an enticingly elegant realm comes as no surprise, and it may even inspire competitors to take a similar path.
3. Its modernity
Three in-house calibers drive the movements of the timepieces – the 1904-PS MC for the standard edition; the 1904-FU MC for the small complication version; and the 9452 MC for the fine watchmaking model, which comes with a flying tourbillon. A transparent case back reveals the meticulously crafted movements of each timepiece. The 1904-PS, or petite seconds, features a subsidiary seconds dial and date window. First used in 2010, it was one of the first movements created by Cartier and promises to maintain perfect chronometric stability with its double-barrel system, to keep the mainspring torque consistent over time. Finishing touches include Côtes de GenÃ¨ve striped bridges, oscillating weight and polished screw-heads. The small complication watches under the Drive de Cartier design operate with the 1904-FU MC caliber, which was launched in 2014. These pieces add a second time-zone dial and a day/night indicator, along with a large date and small seconds. The manual winding 9452 MC movement is used for the flying tourbillon watches, which feature the iconic Geneva seal. These watches are crafted and assembled in Cartier’s fine-watchmaking workshops in the heart of Geneva.
4. Its story
There’s an unmistakable automotive influence to the design of the Drive de Cartier timepieces. The patterning techniques used on the guilloche dial are engraved to look like the radiator grills found on classic automobiles. In addition, the crown used to wind the watch is shaped to resemble car bolts. A retro case shape, coupled with a sleek, satiny frame and plush, leather straps, all pay homage to vintage cars.
5. Its craftsmanship
With a flair for pioneering trends in watchmaking by fusing elegance, precision and timelessness with a bold aesthetic, Cartier is a globally celebrated name. While Drive de Cartier departs from the maison’s typical timepieces in terms of shape, style and inspiration, it carries its high-quality craftsmanship and feted heritage. Louis Cartier, who founded the brand in Paris in 1847, is credited with creating one of the first wristwatches for men – the Santos in 1911. Since that design, the maison has accomplished plenty, revolutionising time-telling with the advent of the rectangular dial and, as this new addition proves, continuing to introduce cutting-edge timepieces.
Read this and more stories in Luxury magazine, out with The National on Thursday, May 12.
Source: art & life