Technically the first mens wristwatch was the Tank from Cartier by commission of Alberto Santos-Dumont and designed by Louis Cartier with a movement supplied by Edouard LeCoultre -of Jaeger LeCoultre manufacture-. What makes the legacy of Tank more iconic are the series of ‘firsts’: It is the first mens wristwatch, the first square watch and by definition the first aviators watch.
With the upcoming Tank MC to be launched this September, Cartier adds another first to the legacy of the Tank: The Tank MC is the first Tank with Cartier’s own fully designed and manufactured movement Caliber 1904 in la Chaux de Fonds.
The dial is decidedly Cartier: Roman numeral, hour and minutes hands in steel flamed blue. A seconds display located at the 6 hour. Of course the synthetic blue saphire on the crown ‘cabochon’. The watch as a near perfect size which gives it contemporary sporty equilibrium without loosing the most important design element of the Tank: Elegance. The size has also been selected to be comfortable to wear and it is.
On the back, the watch has a see thru saphire case back which allows to see the manufacture movement. Here two elements to be noted: the Guilloche of the movement ‘Cotes de Geneve’ form horizontal parallel bars and the frame which holds the round movement to the case has the same finish.
The Tank MC has 48 hours of power reserve. More importantly this automatic movement has an oscillating mass or bidirectional rotor and two barrels (spirals) which adds precision when the movement is winding down.
The Tank MC will be available at Boutique Cartier and Plaza Vendome late September. Two dials are available -silver or black- and steel and rose gold. There is also a white gold skeleton version.
The Cartier strap program allows different colors to be added to the Tank MC which comes from the manufacture in either black or brown.
Images at the Gallery below.