First introduced in 2001, the Cartier Roadster was quite an aesthetic departure from the brand’s other watch collections. Inspired by the sports cars of the 1950s and 1960s, the first Cartier Roadster featured many design cues taken from an automobile.
The details of the Cartier Roadster watches were heavily borrowed from sports automobiles prevalent in the 50s and 60s. For instance, on the original Roadster, the dial design mimicked a speedometer gauge with a circular pattern and included Arabic numerals — which is rare for Cartier as they typically use Roman numerals. The dramatic magnifying lens affixed on the sapphire crystal is reminiscent of a curved windshield of a car and it’s been said that the crown of the Cartier Roadster represents either a car radiator or the wheels of a 1960s muscle car.
Over the years, Cartier enhanced and tweaked some of the design elements and most notably, quickly replaced the Arabic numerals with the traditional Roman numerals for a more classic Cartier look. An interesting feature of the Cartier Roadster watch is the built-in lever system to allow for easy switching between bracelets, leather, and rubber straps. Chronograph editions like the ref. W62019X6 were eventually added to the Cartier Roadster collection, as was Cartier in-house movements.
The sizes of the Cartier Roadster range from small for the ladies to XL 48mm editions for men and everything in between. The ladies’ Cartier Roadster watches are available in steel, gold, or a combination of both, and wearers can opt for diamond-set bezels, lugs, or lavish full diamond Roadster models. A popular feature of the ladies’ Cartier Roadster is the pink mother-of-pearl dial offered on some models.
The Cartier Roadster S was launched in 2010 and positioned as an entry level Carter timepiece. A more straightforward version of the Roadster, the Roadster S no longer bears the magnifying lens on the sapphire crystal. The Cartier Roadster S is available in a full stainless steel construction or for a more unique look, a stainless steel case with an aDLC bezel and rubber strap.
A tribute to automobiles, the Cartier Roadster watch perfectly combines sporty appeal and classic Cartier charm. Pre-owned Cartier Roadster watches, including used ladies’ Cartier Roadster diamond timepieces and secondhand Cartier Roadster S models, are available in the secondary market at unbeatable prices.