Heuer Carrera 45

Heuer Carrera 45

A longtime racing aficionado, Jack Heuer first conceived of the Carrera in 1962, when he was attending the 12 Hours of Sebring race in Florida. It was there, in a conversation with the parents of the legendary Rodriguez brothers (both drivers), that Heuer first heard the name: Carrera, meaning the Carrera Panamerica, a treacherous five-day race along the Mexican stretch of the Pan-American Highway. The name haunted him, and he registered it the following year.

A new innovation—a tension ring to anchor the dial in place, while also offering greater water resistance—the same year inspired him to incorporate that feature in a watch that would be a game-changer just like Omega's Speedmaster was.

Taking the tachymeter track off the dial wasn't a new innovation—Rolex did it with the Daytona and Omega of course started it, more or less, with the Speedy—but Heuer's obsession with legibility cleaned up the dial in a way that hadn't quite been achieved before. Here now is a watch that shows you only the minimal amount of information, with plain baton markers: clean, uncluttered, undeniably attractive.  

These early Carreras were produced in a variety of styles with a range of dials, but black-on-black continues to be the most desirable. This Carrera, a Reference 3647N, is powered by the robust manually-wound Valjoux 92 chronograph movement, with double subsidiary register layout. The Valjoux 92 is a derivative of the triple register Valjoux 72 that we all know and love, with similar architecture and quality, simply without an hour register.

This particular watch bears a very early serial number, placing it among the earliest Carreras we've ever come across. Complete with Mark I dial, Ed Heuer-signed case back and Heuer Sun buckle — not to mention in incredible condition — this Heuer is a very rare find.

For a watch designed in the 1960s, the Carrera remains a stunner, proving the brilliance of Jack’s design philosophy. A clean dial never goes out of style, and it makes the Carrera an easy watch to dress up or down. At 35.5mm, the case wears extremely well on the modern wrist, its long beveled lugs making it feel a bit larger while still slipping easily under a cuff, or, you know, flame-retardant driving suit. Your call.  



Stainless Steel Case is approximately 35.5mm (excluding crown and puchers). Valjoux 92 Manually-Winding Chronograph Movement. Early 1960s.

Overall Condition: The watch is in excellent condition over all with no major marks or flaws. Stainless steel case bears sharp, even bevels. Matte black Mark I dial is in excellent condition with light patination to the Tritium hour markers. Steel luminous pencil hour and minute hands are in excellent condition with a pleasing matching patina to Tritium luminous material. Pusher are crisp and responsive; unsigned crown. Unsigned screw case back shows only very light marks from wear.

Includes one black 18mm rally strap with steel Heuer Sun buckle.

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