Timeline Watch

Heuer Carrera 45

The first US combat troops arrive in Vietnam. By the end of the year, 190,000 American soldiers are in Vietnam

1965 Heuer Carrera 45 ref. 3647S.

The Porsche Carrera was introduced at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 1963; that same year, Heuer would also release a watch that was (quite coincidentally) also named Carrera.

Although informed by chronographs that Heuer produced in the 1940s and 1950s, the watch was the result of Jack Heuers decision to revamp the brands collection, concentrating on chronographs.

As Jack Heuer himself said in a recent interview: Being at the helm of the company, I felt that we had to review our range of Chronographs. I started out in 1962 with the Autavia in the fall of 1962 to start a new series with the name Carrera and the first Carrera was launched at the Basel Fair in spring 1963.

Like the Porsche Carrera, the Heuer Carrera ushered in a new era for Heuer, and became one of the manufactures most famous designs. Also like the Porsche, the Heuer Carrera was versatile. Although it attracted the attention of race car drivers, it found much success off the track.

The Carrera saw several variations throughout the years, but the earliestincluding the Reference 3647remain truest to Jack Heuers vision.

This silver-dialed Carrera we offer here is an early example of a Reference 3647S, also called the Carrera 45, for the 45 minute register at 3 o’clock. The Reference 3647S is powered by the Valjoux 92, a derivative of the triple register Valjoux 72 without anhour register. The clean lines of the dial are echoed in the sharp bevels of the lugs and the result is quite simply iconic; Heuer’s answer to mid-century trends that, like its automotive counterpart, translates well to modern tastes.

The Carrera was one of Jack Heuers most passionate projects. Jack wanted a watch that was stylish and functional, a watch that gives you everything you need and nothing you dont. The result is the indisputably gorgeous Carrera.
For a watch designed in the early 1960s, the Carrera remains a stunner 50 years later, and this speaks for the brilliance of Jacks design philosophy. A clean dial never goes out of style, and it makes the Carrera an easy watch to wear, whether you are dressing up or down. The 36mm. case wears surprisingly large due to the long beveled lugs.

It all started in 1860, with Edouard Heuer setting up a workshop in Bernese, a predominantly French-speaking area of Switzerland close to the French border, a small town even now with a population under 5000. However, it is no stranger to watch companies, having also been where Breitling was founded and having been home to Longines. Of course those companies were artisan workshops producing small numbers of mostly silver-cased pocket watches.

In 1914 Heuer made the first wristwatch for men, they used pocket-watch movements and reflected demand for wristwatches that would only increase during the First World War and after.

1920 was the first time in 8 years that an Olympic Games had been held, following the cancellation of the 1916 Berlin events. Heuer had some prominence as a sports timing company by this point and was pleased to be selected as the official timer of the Antwerp games. This was subsequently extended to the 1924 games in Paris and 1928 in Amsterdam: this cemented the brand marriage between timing and sports.

For todays collectors, the heyday for Heuer really began in the mid-1930s. I think thats also probably true for many other brands. Heuer began making pilots chronographs in 35. These were used by Air Force pilots primarily, a lot of them in the German Air Force. For most Heuer collectors, these pilot chronographs from around 1935 are the first real survivors that regularly can be found in the market today.

In the 1960s and 1970s, no brand was more prominent in motorsports timing than Heuer.


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