While Cartier’s most visible novelty in 2018 was the Santos, the watch that clearly stole the year has to be the Tank Cintrée. Now, just ahead of SIHH 2019, the maison seems to be set to have another runaway winner on its hands. First, a brief backstory, courtesy of your friend and mine, Mr George Cramer.
Says George, “The history of Cartier’s watches shows us that the Tonneau is the second oldest watch made by the maison. In line up there is first the Santos Dumont, designed in 1904 and then the Tonneau in 1906. Tonneau had its 100th birthday in 2006, when Cartier issued the watch as the larger Tonneau XL.”
And now for 2019, Cartier is announcing the Tonneau again, with the Tonneau Watch Large Model in platinum and pink gold, issued as a numbered limited edition of 100 pieces. Measuring in at 16mm x 12.9mm, the new watch features the Tonneau’s classic barrel shaped case with the cabochon fitted crown and shaped screws adoring the lugs on either ends of the watch. The seamlessness of the Tonneau’s case is a result of the bezel and top of the case being formed out of one block, with the back of the fitting snugly from under.
The pink gold version bears a champagne dial, while the platinum version has a silver dial, with stylized Roman hour makers along the railtrack minute scale.
The movement powering the new Tonneau Watch Large Model, is the manual wound Calibre 1917 MC with a minimum power reserve of 38 hours. But it doesn’t stop there.
Drawing further from within the history of the Tonneau, and particularly the Tonneau XL dual time zone from the CPCP collection, Cartier is also announcing the Skeleton Dual Time Zone Tonneau Watch. Rendered, again, in platinum and pink gold, the watch features the Calibre 9919, a skeleton movement that fits the curved, tapering form of the Tonneau case.
Opposed to the original Tonneau XL dual time zone, which very simply had two small movements fitted within to enable the dual time zone indication, the Calibre 9919 is a single integrated movement that is able to display two time zones. For ease of use, the movement allows for both sets of hands to be adjusted using the crown at 2 o’clock, thereafter, the crown at 4 can pressed to adjust the hour hand for the second time zone, by one-hour jumps.
The pink and platinum versions of the Tonneau Watch Large Model will be issued as a numbered limited edition of 100 pieces, with a third variation — baguette-cut diamond-set platinum — issued as a numbered limited edition of 20 pieces.
Tonneau Watch Large Model
Manual winding Calibre 1917 MC; hour and minutes, 38-hour power reserve
16mm x 12.9mm in platinum or pink gold, water-resistant
Issued as a numbered limited edition of 100 pieces