It doesn’t happen every day that we see a Cartier Tank Mono Poussoir at an auction. A Tortue Mono Poussoir sure, these are easy to find, but the Tank Mono Pusher, that has the same movement as the Tortue MP, is a rare beast in every aspect.The Tank Mono Poussoir was launched in the Collection Privée, Cartier Paris series in a limited edition of 100 pieces in pink- and 100 pieces in white gold. Another piece unique was made in platinum, identical to the ones earlier mentioned and there was a different piece unique made in a platinum case, with a thicker bezel with engraved roman numerals, also the way the crown was set, was different. The watch has the same 045MC caliber, the dial was identical, with Paris underneath Cartier, but it was not an attractive piece, from a visual point of view.The Tank Mono Poussoir, was seen as anew watch when it was launched, but in fact it was a very well done re issue of a vintage watch. Like the Tortue Mono Poussoir, also this square Tank existed around 1933. Strange enough the watch was not described in the Tank books by watch expert Franco Cologni, while an earlier book, ‘Le Temps de Cartier’ by Jader Barracca, Giampiero Negretti and Franco Nencini, has some information and even a picture of a vintage piece.When the watch was re-launched in the CPCP Collection in 2008, the larger watch trend was hot and the large Santos 100 very popular. This Tank has dimensions of 34 x 42mm, making it a very wearable, larger watch. It was not hard for Cartier to sell the first 100 pieces in pink gold and the 100 pieces in white gold, that were launched 8 months later, were also hard to find in the Boutiques.
This white gold Tank MP (pictured underneath, photo by Phillips) that now will be auctioned by Phillips, is to my knowledge the first white gold version offered at an auction.The crown of these watches is more prominent than we are used to, from Cartier. It’s a bit larger and winds very easy. One push = go, second push = stop, third push = back to twelve, it’s as easy as that. The crown is set with a pretty large sapphire and since the fact that there is only one button, to operate the watch, instead of the two + crown, like the usual chronographs have, it’s a sports watch, that matches a more formal outfit very well.The movement, the 045MC was developed, by a company called THA. THA is an enterprise that was formed by watchmakers ‘Vianney Halter, François-Paul Journe & Denis Flageollet’. So this calibre is the result of these highly successful watchmakers. From a visual point of view it is a very interesting and good looking caliber, that works flawless.When it comes to service however, Cartier asks an unreasonable price for this 045MC movement. Still it is a very desirable watch and from a collection point of view, way more interesting than the pretty common Tortue Mono Poussoir, that was produced in larger numbers and different models and is usually offerend for around 10.000 Euro.
Phillips gave a fair estimate of CHF 14000 – 22000 for the Tank Mono Poussoir in white gold.
Headquarters of Phillips are in New York and London, with offices throughout the world, Phillips conducts sales in a select number of categories: Contemporary Art, Photographs, Editions, Design, and Jewelry. Additionally, their core art business includes special exhibitions, private sales, advising private estates and corporate clients, museum services, and consulting.