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The playful Tank Must de Cartier - a breath of fresh air

by Ching Pang 16 Jun 2022
The past few years have been monumental for me personally. I was blessed with 2 lovely daughters in the last 2 years and it is at these personal milestones, that one finds themselves thinking about purchasing a timepiece. Ever since they were born, I've been searching for the perfect watches to prepare them for their inevitable collecting journey.
The biggest requirement would be the design would have to be timeless, there was no point getting them a watch that would look dated by the time they would be old enough to appreciate it. In my eyes, there is only one brand that does this effortlessly and with an air of elegance unmatched by any other brand - Cartier. Widely recognised as one of the the most significant brands in horological history, Cartier has continually produced watches with abiding designs, lasting over 150 years.
The Tank Must de Cartier designed in 1977
The original Must de Cartier Tanks were released originally in 1977 in the midst of the Quartz Crisis that was upturning the Swiss watch industry. The brand had to find a way to survive through these tough times and the solution was to turn to releasing a line of products which would make the brand more accessible and widely known. These were the first non-precious metal watches with quartz movements Cartier ever launched and it was a complete success, turning around the fortunes of the brand.
When Cartier decided to revisit these designs in 2021, I was immediately impressed by the playful nature of these modern renditions. These timepieces play a great tribute to the 1977 models, recognising the significance of these to the brand's history while incorporating modern changes to make them truly contemporary Cartiers. The movement is the reworked Caliber 157, which was completely remade in 2018 to optimise efficiency and lengthen its battery life to eight years. What this meant for me was, I would only need to change the battery twice before being able to pass these watches to my daughters when they reach the age of 16!
It was extra fitting and seemed like the perfect choice, as my elder daughter's nickname was Ruby and my younger daughter's name sounded like Sapphire. The signature Cartier red and versatile blue were the obvious choices.
Often in the watch world, it is tempting to try and set yourself apart from the other brands by introducing more complications and overthinking designs. The real challenge is being able to stick to your roots and continue to release classic designs in new packages. These Tank Musts represent a fun and enjoyable experience and are the perfect watches for my daughters to act as a refreshing introduction to the potentially daunting world of horology.
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