Chemically, physically and optically identical to mined diamonds, lab-grown precious stones are not new but they’re definitely rarely if ever used in the luxury watchmaking segment — and they now take centre stage on the new TAG Heuer Carrera Plasma Tourbillon.
The timepiece features the innovative Diamant D’Avant-Garde technology – the name of the plasma, CVD (Chemical Vapour Deposition) process used to create synthetic diamonds – allows the brand to use diamonds in unique shapes and textures, manufactured with a network of specialised partners such as Lusix, Capsoul and Diamaze.
This disruptive design exhibiting lab-grown diamonds marks a major milestone in the over 160-year company history and the watch industry at large. The most affordable tourbillon-chronograph on the market, heralded by previous Chief Executive Jean-Claude Biver, is now emblematic of the brand’s and its latest Chief Frederic Arnault’s interest in avant-garde technology and processes.
Exemplary of the brand’s DNA, the Plasma is the first luxury mechanical watch to use or lab-grown “artificial” diamonds. This technical disruption is a new way of mastering design and the play of light with material, and the versatility of lab-grown diamonds provides unbounded creativity.
By adding the cutting-edge aspect of lab-grown diamonds into its product universe, TAG Heuer also offers a whole different level to the creative freedom and possible diamond shapes, as well as implementations of different design techniques using lab-grown diamonds.
According to Edouard Mignon, Chief Innovation Officer, TAG Heuer & LVMH Watches & Jewellery Division, “Lab-grown diamonds allow us to innovate and experiment with this exceptional material, and this opens up a new realm of possibilities for designers, watchmakers and engineers.”
A Masterpiece Of Materials And Contrasts
What better platform to showcase the brand’s latest innovation than their iconic Carrera, the iconic sports watch designed with the latest timekeeping technology for professional drivers and sports-car enthusiasts?
Available in a black, 44mm case with diamonds inset via invisible setting, the use of anodised aluminium has allowed TAG Heuer to accentuate the gleam and sparkle of diamonds set within its black confines; accented by a 2.5 ct diamond that serves as a spectacular literal and metaphorical crown. The TAG Heuer Carrera Plasma, powered by the H02 Tourbillon Nanograph movement, features embellished indexes set upon polycrystalline diamond dial.
The special polycrystalline diamond dial is one of the highlights of this new TAG Heuer Carrera Plasma timepiece. This diamond effect on the specially created panda dial is a sum of crystals being grown as one – creating a one-diamond “plate” that looks like it has been sprinkled with diamonds.
Technically speaking, this represents another type of a rich CVD growth, where many diamonds create spectacular reflections and a diverse visual effect while still constituting a single diamond piece. At three o’clock and nine o’clock, the minute chronograph counter and the chronograph hours counter feature their own contrasting black polycrystalline diamond plates and are equipped with a polished rhodium-plated hand to truly support the light interaction.
Powered by the Nanograph movement that incorporates the high-tech carbon hairspring developed by the TAG Heuer Institute, the new timepiece is quite literally the brand’s most carbon-based watch. The carbon hairspring the Nanograph delivers exceptional levels of anti-magnetism, shock resistance, stability across temperature ranges and refined geometry for excellent chronometric performance.
This also represents a truly magical way of mastering the carbon material in and outside the timepiece, as well as a full and fusional integration of carbon throughout the watch and with the innovative lab-grown diamonds.
CARRERA PLASMA TOURBILLON NANOGRAPH
PRICE + SPECS
Case 44mm Sandblasted black anodised aluminium case set with 48 lab-grown diamonds (4.2 ct)
Movement Automatic COSC certified HEUER02 Tourbillon Nanograph with 65 hours power reserve
Price On Application
(Images: Tag Heuer)