The Tank Basculante, the Santos 100 XL, and the Ballon Bleu are all breathtaking Cartier models. We’re taking a closer look at each watch in this special edition of our Editors’ Picks in honor of Cartier Brand Week.
Daily Drivers: Great Watches Under $5,000
Cartier Ballon Bleu de Cartier
When most people hear Cartier, they probably imagine a small, gold, rectangular watch. It’s not that surprising considering the Tank collection is the cornerstone of the brand. That said, Cartier has much more to offer. Take the Ballon Bleu, for example. In terms of variations, the Ballon Bleu collection is just as diverse as any other Cartier line. With men’s and women’s models, small and large cases, quartz and mechanical movements, you’ll certainly find a watch that fits your needs. The Ballon Bleu is unique among Cartier watches. Known for their angular timepieces, the Ballon Bleu is anything but. Some of the brand’s typical flourishes, such as large Roman numerals and a blue crown cabochon, have found their way onto these timepieces; however, the case shape, and to some extent, the bracelet, are very different. Perhaps this explains why the model is so popular. The Ballon Bleu has enough of the brand’s DNA to be identified as a Cartier but also appeals to customers who want something a bit different.
Enthusiast’s Corner: Rare or Exceptional Timepieces
Cartier Santos 100 XL Chronograph
The standard Cartier Santos is a true dress watch: sleek, rectangular, and made of precious metal. It’s generally easy to wear due to its modest size and lowkey character. The Cartier Santos 100 XL, however, doesn’t quite fit the mold. There’s nothing sleek about it. The Santos 100 XL is as bold and bulky as it gets – but in a good way. Its target audience is the next generation of Cartier wearers who prefer something modern and trendy in terms of looks and size. The Cartier Santos 100 XL Chronograph and its 42.7-mm stainless steel case, automatic movement, and exotic black leather strap with a steel double adjustable folding buckle make for a very modern timepiece indeed. It may not be for everyone, but if you’re a fan of Cartier and want to sport something with a pair of shorts and a t-shirt, this is a better choice than a traditional Tank.
Iconic Timepieces: Great Value for Money
When someone talks about watch complications, they are almost always referring to the movement and its features (chronographs, tourbillons, minute repeaters, etc.). Very rarely, however, complications have nothing to do with the caliber itself. Sure, these are not the same type of “complications,” but they often make the timepiece intriguing nonetheless. The Cartier Tank collection contains a wide selection of different models. However, one that stands out from the crowd is the Basculante. At first glance, it looks like a normal Cartier Tank; it has a rectangular case, Roman numerals, and white dial. You then quickly notice the unorthodox placement of its cabochon, which sits above the dial instead of on the side. Why? Well, it’s simply the location of the Basculante’s crown. Similar to another iconic reversible timepiece, you can flip the Cartier Basculante over within its frame to protect the dial. It is a genius design that has made the Basculante an icon.