Cartier comes, In contrary to many other brands, quite often with a new watch case. Sometimes an adaption of an existing case, but quite often also with something totally new.
The ‘Rotonde de Cartier’ case is a prime example of a completely new watch case.
When it was introduced in 2006, the collection needed a universal case for the men’s collection.
Something that was not too eye catching, less outspoken, discreet and masculine looking,
a case that would also appeal to the more formal or business dressed man. The Rotonde de Cartier was the answer.
A smooth, slick pretty flat round case, that looks good in different sizes and that could handle all kinds of different movements, from a simple time only, to complicated tourbillons or perpetual calendars.
But that’s something we only found out recently. Back in 2006 I had no idea where it would be
going to. The Rotonde collection started with the first two watches, mentioned here and has become, in six years time, an important collection of more than 14 different watches, plus the various models from the ‘Art series’.
Most watches were added to the collection during the last two years, when Cartier presented
one complication after another and almost everyone with a new In House developed caliber.
Let’s start at the beginning.
– ROTONDE GRANDE DATE –
The Rotonde Grande date was the first watch in the new Rotonde case that came out in 2006. Sleek business watch with Grande Date, 42mm Case in white- or pink gold and a mechanical hand wound 9602 caliber. It was quite a different look for Cartier and for the first time La Maison presented a watch in a case that was definitely with for their men’s clientele in mind. The watch has also been available in a 35mm case, which looked very handsome too, but both sizes are not available anymore.
– ROTONDE DAY & NIGHT –
The Rotonde Day & Night is one of my favorite Rotonde watches. Wonderful idea of Carole Forestier-Kasapi to turn the vintage ‘Jour et Nuit’ clock concept from 1920, into a mens watch. White- or pink gold case and mechanical hand wound 9903 MC caliber. This model was produced in a small number and is sold out now.
Let’s go on with the current line up; all following models are from the current collection.
– ROTONDE 8 DAYS –
Superb dress watch with mechanical movement Caliber 9910MC and a 42mm case. The asymmetrical dial, to me, looks so different and stunning. It’s actually something Cartier also did with the Ballon bleu Chronograph and it made that watch a chronograph with unusual impeccable looks.
– ROTONDE JOUR et NUIT, TWO TIME ZONE –
An important watch in the Mainstream Collection of 2012, is the new ‘Rotonde de Cartier Large Date Two Time Zone’ in pink gold! Really cool 42mm ‘Rotonde de Cartier’ case with the 8011MC automatic caliber. Classic guilloche dial, with a hand for the 24 hour indication, grande date and ‘Day & Night’
indication. The movement is the automatic 8011 MC, a reworked JLC caliber, that Cartier also uses for
the ‘Pasha de Cartier, Large Date Two Time Zone’.
Please note that the date window has changed, from a square to a round window, since the watch was introduced at the SIHH, which is in my opinion, a very nice improvement.
– ROTONDE QUANTIEME PERPETUAL CALENDAR –
Perpetual Calendar with In House with 9422 MC In House mechanical caliber. The watch is available in a 45mm case in white- or pink gold.
– ROTONDE MINUTE REPEATER TOURBILLON –
It’s actually since quite some time that Cartier is presenting again a Minute repeater, and this time in combination with a flying tourbillon. The new developed in house movement calibre 9402 MC, Geneva Seal, is housed in the well known Rotonde case, in 45mm with a sapphire glass bottom. Extremely smart looking watch, with a fantastic wrist presence. Sure 451mm quite a watch, but the Rotonde case fits also a smaller wrist very good.
During the presentation in La Chaud-de-Fonds, Carole Forestier-Kasapi explained, and showed us the difference between the various materials that could be used for the case. When one decides for a high end watch like a minute repeater, the obvious choice for the case, is quite often platinum, but we learned during her presentation, that actually for the tone intensity, this is not the best option.
Yellow gold sounds better than white gold, but titanium sounds best of all! Amazing to hear the difference in a room full with people. Cartier decided to use a push button, which is not common for minute repeaters at all, but otherwise the case would have been thicker.
– ROTONDE TOURBILLON CADRAN LOVÉ –
Cartier Cadran Lové Flying Tourbillon A large Flying Tourbillon watch in a Rotonde case of 46mm and as we are used from Cartier the crown is set with a cabochon sapphire, crystal is sapphire and a double adjustable deployant buckle in 18 carat grey gold. Movement is the Calibre 9458 MC flying tourbillon, Geneva Seal, we know from the Pasha Crocodile Flying Tourbillon, that was presented last year. You remember that stunning ladies watch with the Crocodile set in diamonds on the dial.
This Cartier Cadran Lové Flying Tourbillon, is actually the masculine version of the Tourbillon et Crocodile watch, the two form a stunning couple. Both share the same movement and have a same dial layout. The Cartier Cadran Lové Flying Tourbillon, also a limited edition of only 100 pieces
and was officially presented in Geneva this year.
Some tech. specs.: movement: Manufacture mechanical movement, manual-winding, diameter: 17 ½ lines (39 mm), thickness: 5.58 mm, number of jewels: 19, number of parts: 167, balance: 21,600 vibrations/hour, power reserve: Approx. 50 hours and of course an individually numbered movement.
– ROTONDE SECONDE FOLIUM DÜRER –
Released is 2010, the Rotonde Seconde Folium Dürer made quite an impression, with it’s seconds hand that traces a figure of eight – a cycloid known as Dürer’s Folium. Completely reworked automatic Rogier Dubuis Caliber 9913MC, the complication module, of this Rotonde, the seconds hand, is manufactured and designed by Cartier’s watchmakers. Very good looking watch, housed in a white- or pink gold 45mm Rotonde case.
– ROTONDE ANNUAL CALENDAR –
Very smart looking annual calendar with automatic In House Caliber 9908 MC, based on the 1904 Caliber. All corrections via the crown, one per year only. Grande date.
– ROTONDE TOURBILLON 40mm –
Cartiers famous flying tourbillon caliber 9552MC finally in a smaller Rotonde case. For me the winner of the SIHH, because it’s so discreet and wearable. Case: 40mm and currently the smallest Rotonde and Cartier’s smallest tourbillon.
Ref. nr. W1556215 pink gold
Ref. nr. W1556216 white gold
– ROTONDE ASTRO REGULATEUR –
ROTONDE ASTRORÉGULATEUR – (Limited Edition of 50 pc.), Newly developed In House
caliber 9800 MC. This Calibre 9800 MC is a highly original movement that compensates for the effects of gravity, on the timing mechanism in vertical positions. The object of four patent applications, this movement is the fruit of five years of development within, the Cartier Manufacture,in La Chaud-de-Fonds, where it was designed, developed, produced and assembled. The Rotonde Astrorégulateur, Grand Complication timepiece testifies to Cartier’s deep-felt commitment, to fine watchmaking.
– ROTONDE JUMPING HOUR –
A really strong design that’s now adapted and came back in the collection. The mechanical In House 9905 MC caliber was especially created. It’s a 42mm case and the watch comes in pink- or in white gold.
– ROTONDE TOURBILLON CHRONOGRAPHE MONO POUSSOIR –
For the first time in the history of watchmaking, the calibre 9431 MC movement has combined two of the most outstanding complications: the single push-piece chronograph and the tourbillon.This movement was developed exclusively for Cartier in 2005 by one of the most celebrated names in Swiss fine watchmaking: Renaud & Papi, limited edition of 50 pieces, individually numbered pieces, case 46.6mm, in 950 platinum, Sapphire crystal and sapphire crystal backback, water resistant to 30 metres, adjustable double folding buckle in platinum, number of jewels: 25, Number of parts: 253, balance: 21.600 vibrations per hour, power reserve: 72 hours, Individually numbered movement
– ROTONDE SKELETON FLYING TOURBILLON –
The year after the watch was shown at the SIHH in pink gold, which gave it a rich look. Both versions are limited editions of just 100 pieces. In House mechanical Caliber 9455 MC, bearing the Geneva Seal and a Rotonde case in 45mm.
– ROTONDE CHRONOGRAPE –
A Chronographe with a very clever concept; I really like the idea of the two hands that are partly covered by the center piece of the dial, but the execution is not optimal. In my opinion it is too hard to see the difference between the two hands, which makes it too hard to see the time. Model: Rotonde Chronograph Central. Movement: Calibre 9907 MC. Pink- or white gold case in 46.6mm. Sapphire crystal (front & back) Water resistant: 30 meter.