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The World’s Original Wristwatch Just Got a Stealthy Upgrade for Today

WatchesThe World's Original Wristwatch Just Got a Stealthy Upgrade for Today

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Say hello to the darker, modernized Cartier Santos

Cartier made a big splash this week when it celebrated the massive renovation to its flagship store on New York's Fifth Avenue, reestablishing itself as a leader in the race to get really rich people to part with their money for some beautiful wares. But it's not just its buildings that are getting updated. The French house also recently introduced a new take on the classic Cartier Santos, bringing the world's original wristwatch into the 21st century (not that there's anything wrong with the original).

The watch, which was first released in 1904, has always had a distinctive square shape. But instead of rendering the newest version in gold or platinum, Cartier used a gray stainless steel that's so dark it's almost black to create 41mm case. The color is thematic: the dial has a black face with bold white lettering, and the whole thing is mounted on a textured calfskin strap that's coated in amorphous diamond-like carbon, or ADLC.

While such a dark colorway might render other timepieces sporty, the new Cartier Santos remains an elegant option for a stylish guy. (It's just as easy to imagine this watch on the red carpet as it is on a cool guy looking to switch up his wrist game on the weekend.) And that's part of what makes Cartier such an enduring brand: its unique ability keep its classic designs fresh year after year.

$7,600, available at cartier.com

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