Of all the watch models that Cartier has created over the years, the Tank is among the most famous, as well as the most formal. There was also no need for this, as other legendary watches with names like Santos, Pasha, and more recent, Ballon Bleu and Calibre, easily filled this position. With the expansion of the Tank collection in the last couple of years, this changed, and not in the least thanks to this Tank MC.
Introduced in 2013, the Tank MC cleverly gives the classic style of a Cartier Tank a more sportive edge. Although available in precious metal, it is the stainless steel case that already makes the first difference. Even when it is only in your perception, stainless steel always seems to be so much more appropriate to wear with a casual chino or your favorite pair of jeans.
With a case measuring 44 x 34.3 mm it is generously sized, but it is the thickness that gives the Tank MC its edge. Measuring 9.5 mm, its height gives it substance, yet is at the same time it is not overbearing. It puts the Tank MC right in the sweet spot in terms of dimensions, avoiding the utter elegance of smaller and thinner Tanks, without becoming a large piece of metal around your wrist, just for the sake of being large.
In fact, the Tank MC makes the most of its movement, Cartier‘s manufacture caliber 1904-PS MC. This automatic movement offers a 48-hour power reserve and can be viewed through the sapphire case back of the Tank. The movement also features a large sub-seconds at six o’clock. While in most cases this makes a watch look even more classical, with this Tank MC it does the opposite, making the dial visually more playful with its round subdial. The same can be said for the date-function. While I normally prefer the background color of the date wheel to match that of the dial, the white of the Tank MC works well, especially in combination with the other white details of the dial.
One of the reasons why this Tank MC is also so sportive it the color of the dial. Cartier is no stranger to featuring colored dials in its watches, yet blue is a rarity. It is surprising how much this color can aide in the sportive perception of the watch, especially because it still follows Cartier traditions by featuring Roman numerals and a guilloche pattern on the dial. Of course, the blue is also a stunning match with the blue synthetic spinel set in the crown, another Cartier tradition, and the alligator strap.
At $7.000,- the blue version of the Tank MC cost a $250,- premium over the white or black dialed version. While we can argue why you have to pay more for just a different color, it seems to be money well spend. Not only because it is, and most likely will always remain, a rare color among Cartier’s, but also because it brings this watch into a territory few Tank watches have gone before: that of being casual cool!