Last year at SIHH Cartier relaunched their iconic Santos wristwatch and while we saw some typically stunning additions to that collection, including a lovely chronograph, skeleton and a glorious new steely blue dial, it was the revived Cartier Santos-Dumont, a very pleasant homage to their past, that excited me most.
Cartier Santos-Dumont: A Homage To The Past
The new Cartier Santos-Dumont watch remains true to the elegance of the original 1904 model designed for famed aviator Alberto Santos-Dumont – understated, pared-down and fitted to an alligator leather strap. Its unchanged square shape, reminiscent of the geometry popular in Paris at the time, promotes pure and symmetrical design to mirror the four sharp corners of the Eiffel Tower.The model comes in three versions: 18k rose gold, gold and steel, or steel sporting a high-efficiency quartz movement with a lifespan of approximately six years. To achieve this, Cartier reworked and resized the movement to reduce its energy consumption and paired it with a new high-performance battery.
While not specifically referred to as ‘thin’, the new Cartier Santos-Dumont piece is just 7mm thick and comes in two classic sizes: 27.5mm or 31.4mm wide. For a man, the 27.5mm model is too small on the wrist, however, the 31.4mm is extremely wearable and presents itself as a fantastic formal timepiece, discreet beneath a French cuff, and is perfect for a man or woman.
A Lesson In Revivals
As Cartier achieved in 2018 with the Santos relaunch, the 2019 Cartier Santos-Dumont is an undeniable success, retaining the visual elements that made it such an icon while transporting the beaded winding crown and blue cabochon into the modern day.
Battery-powered watches may be on the ‘no-go’ list for many, and I’m happy to admit that usually, I’m one of those people, but achieving a starting price of €3,550 for the small and €3,800 for the large model wouldn’t have been possible without a quartz movement and wearing this much pedigree on your wrist, at the price, is what makes the Cartier Santos-Dumont such a winner.
As an entry point to luxury watches, the Cartier brand itself, or as an addition to any enthusiasts collection, the Cartier Santos-Dumont triumphs as a dependable everyday wearer or timeless dress watch.
To view the entire Cartier Santos Collection head to Cartier.
Feature Image Credit: @Styleternity