Find out more about the Cartier Tank Française
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Cartier Tank Française - a modern version of the classic watch
The Française enjoys great popularity with tank lovers alongside the original. The characteristic tank design, which is inspired by British battle tanks, it is of course also retained in this variant. For example, the case is adorned with a two girder-like structure. Imitating the revolving caterpillar tracks, which simultaneously trace and extend the sides of the dial. Not only geometrically convincing - the detailed elaborated dial through the combination of square and rectangular shapes. The track-like minute display also adds to the unique design of the tank. Sword-like blued steel hands complete the unmistakable look of Tank Française. Of course, the traditional roman numerals are also not missing in this variant - optionally at twelve o'clock, supplemented by a punctiform indices all around continuous and aligned to the center of the dial. On the side, the octagonal, beaded winding crown adorns this icon of modern watchmaking.
Main characteristic of the Tank Française is above all the seamless transition of the domed, centrally located in the bracelet housing in the elegant link chain bracelet. Without breaking the lines, the components of the elegant watch, which is available as a choice in stainless steel or gold, blend together. The result is a unique integrated bracelet look that completes the harmonious overall impression of the Tank Française. The extra-flat, narrow design underlines the simple and elegant impression that is inherent in this Cartier series.
Visually neither intrusive nor showy, it is wearable every day. Not only does it combine technology and aesthetics, it also creates a symbiosis between a stylish piece of jewelry and a practical timepiece. Whether as an everyday watch or as a fashion accessory - the Tank Française is wearable for any occasion!
The history of the Tank
Inspired by the first published images of British assault tanks on caterpillars in World War I, Louis-François Cartier designed the first "tank" that became an icon of modern watchmaking. General John Pershing received the handmade prototype wristwatch in 1917 as a gift from the well-known Parisian jeweler in 1917, in gratitude for restoring peace in Europe with his armored cars known as tanks. The simple, clear forms he used in the design of the watch spring from the French "second Neoclassicism," which was a forerunner of the Art Deco, which was particularly popular in the 1920s. Objectivity and avant-garde style, which have always been a feature of Cartier's house, find their expression in the tank.
Cartier created not only an artistic gem with the Tank, but also revolutionized the watch world: With the functional and aesthetically pleasing wristwatch he replaced the common pocket watch. Together with the famous watchmaker Edmond Jaeger, he designed a universal design that was extremely popular even then and became a major component of Cartier's watch assortment.
So followed quickly the first variants of the best seller. While initially sold mainly men's models, Cartier created with the Tank Cintrée in 1921 a feminine version of the tank. This was followed by the Tank Chinoise in 1922, which took up the then trend towards Far Eastern aesthetics and the Tank à Guichets with digital time. Since then, the tank has shaped watchmaking almost every decade. In 1996, Tank Française continued the series' success story by updating the classic in a modern way.
Famous tank wearers
With the versatility and timelessness of the Tank models, it's not surprising that they've always enjoyed popularity with a variety of celebrities. So the tank made its cinematic breakthrough at the age of nine on the wrist of Rudolph Valentino in "The Son of the Sheik" - regardless of the historical discrepancy between watch and film setting.
Since then, the tank has won many other celebrities. Personalities such as Michelle Obama, Jackie Kennedy and Princess Diana and superstars like Muhammad Ali, Madonna and Andy Warhol can be seen in numerous photos with their Tanks. The latter never wore his tank wound and said in an interview, "I do not wear it to show the time. I wear a tank because that's a watch you have to have." French fashion designer Jean Charles de Castelbajac, in his homage to Tank in the weekly Madame Figaro, says: "If all tanks could be built by Cartier we would live in peace!"
Whether for men or women, in politics, art or pop - the Tank can look back on a broad sponsorship for its 100th birthday. Just recently, reality star Kim Kardashian bought Jackie Kennedy's tank for $ 379,500 at an auction.
An overview of Tank Française models
Whether with automatic or quartz movement, made of steel or precious metal, with or without stones - there are also many variations within the series. Models of the Tank Française include the following:
- The Cartier W51008Q3 is equipped with a quartz movement and has a steel case and strap with triple folding clasp. It is a small model with a case size of 25 mm. The dial is white with Roman numerals. The steel crown is set with a spinel cabochon.
- The W50002N2 has a yellow gold bracelet and case. The dial is silver. It is a model for women with 19 mm case size and quartz movement.
- The W51005Q4 is a larger 32mm model with self-winding mechanical movement. The case and the bezel are made of steel, the steel and yellow gold bracelet with triple folding clasp made of steel. At six o'clock is a date window. The polygonal crown is made of yellow gold and set with a synthetic spinel cabochon. The dial is silver.
- The Cartier W51002Q3 has a bezel, a bracelet and a 27 mm case made out of steel. The dial is silver with roman numerals and this model for men and women is fitted with automatic movement.
More exciting Cartier series
- The Cartier Tank Solo offers the classic tank design in a variety of variations. Ideal for tank beginners!
- The Cartier Ballon Bleu owes its name to its round case, as well as the blue cabochon, which adorns the crown. The slightly different wristwatch that convinces with its unique elegance just like its siblings.
- The Cartier Santos was Cartier's gift to the Brazilian aviator Alberto Santos Dumont and, with its eye-catching screws and rounded corners, has since become a classic in the Cartier collection.
- The Cartier Santos 100 reinterprets the Santos for their 100th birthday and thus offers a top modern variant of the classic.
- The Cartier Panthère has been captivating women with their legendary design since 1980 - as a watch and as jewellery.