The Best Watches to Invest in Right Now
Today's timepieces that will become tomorrow's vintage classics. The following are just some of the best watches to invest in right now.
Breitling Watch Navitimer 1959 Re-Edition, P423,213.20
A like-for-like copy of the 1959 original, this year’s re-edition of Breitling’s iconic Navitimer combines a chronograph with a rotating slide rule bezel, a scale that can be used by pilots to calculate fuel consumption and airspeed, updating one of the most iconic pilot’s watches ever made with a new movement and a 70 hour power reserve. A brand new, retro classic.
Tag Heuer Autavia
Originally introduced in 1933 as a dashboard instruments for planes and cars, then launched as a racing-inspired chronograph in 1962, before being discontinued in the mid-1980s, 2019 saw the reintroduction of Tag Heuer’s Autavia line to ‘appeal to a new generation of adventurers’. The handsome new collection launched with seven retro-styled references, five in stainless steel and two in bronze.
Tudor Black Bay Chrono Steel & Gold, P317,409.90
Rolex’s sibling has spent the last few years re-establishing itself as a company equally capable of producing iconic watches. Now it has doubled down on that position by throwing in some curveballs. Among them is this new spin on its Black Bay Chrono, which apes the colour scheme of the vintage ‘John Player Special’ Paul Newman Rolex Daytona, with its black face and gold sub dials, adding a motorsport element into Tudor’s catalogue for the first time.
Farer might be a relatively young brand, but they definitely know their history. This model is named after the HMS Leven, a 20—gun Royal Navy ship that fought in the Napoleonic wars, before embarking on a huge voyage across the world, mapping the east coast of Africa and parts of Arabia.
Jaeger LeCoultre Master Memovox, P606,857
Made available in a limited series of 500 editions, it’s covered in subtle nods to the classic 1968 timepiece, including a stylised diving helmet and an alarm mechanism.
Oris Carl Brashear Chronograph Limited Edition, P233,676
Oris’ diver commemorates the inspirational life of Carl Brashear, who was not only the first African American in the U.S Navy, but also the first amputee. This bronze-cased, two-counter chronograph is the second limited edition watch the Swiss brand has dedicated to his memory.
Longines Heritage 1945, P86,330.30
Like a record company releasing a remastered great, Longines has sourced this stone-walled archive classic. The redefined 1945 exudes retro class from its copper-tone convex dial to the aged leather strap. A hit.
Omega Railmaster Co-Axial Master Chronometer, P338,181.10
The Railmaster might be antimagnetic but it has a forceful allure — a stylish mid-century design with simple legibility. And that antimagnetism will see you good to 15,000 gauss, which should ease your worried mind.
Omega Seamaster Diver 300M, P257,692.70
Ok, so this one isn't going to make you a millionaire overnight, but in terms of holding value and holding strong, it's as dependable as they get. With Omega culling the quartz model from the lineup with a view to moving up the luxury ladder, buying a Seamaster Professional should be an easy decision to make. Short of buying a Rolex Submariner, there's no surer thing.
Breitling Navitimer Rattrapante, P609,504.90
As complicated as complications come, the Rattrapante's dual-handed, split-seconds movement allows one hand to stop and measure an intermediate time while the other ticks on with all the resolve of Chris Froome in le maillot jaune.
Omega Spacemaster Z-33, P254,447.20
A reimagining of the seventies Pilot Line case, the Spacemaster continues with the Omega is most famous for: space exploration. Quirky design, in-depth functionality and impressive heritage gives the Z-33 a real chance of becoming an investment piece. The popularity of vintage Omega is on the rise, and pieces like this will rise with it.
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Extra-Thin, P3,187,081
The Royal Oak's classic silhouette here has all the girth of a wafer-thin mint due to a self-winding movement measuring an extraordinary 3.05mm. View it through the exhibition case back if you don't believe us.
TAG Heuer Silverstone, P306,959.39
This 'Heuer'-badged limited edition has flown under the radar for a while, and is still something of a bargain, but it won't be that way forever. As the 'Heuer'-badged Monaco limited editions have shown, there is a definite market for reissue vintage, and the Silverstone, with its TV case and leather rally strap, is a prime contender for the next big thing.
PANERAI Panerai Luminor Marina, P462,808.30
It may not be a limited edition, but the PAM00422's reasonable price, in-house movement and vintage good looks have made it irresistible. If history's anything to go by, desirable Panerais gain value as time ticks along, particularly early examples of new models. Hang on to this one until Panerai decides to stop making it and you should do pretty well.
Rado HyperChrome Captain Cook, P92,821.30
This updated Sixties icon nods to the Royal Navy explorer who supplied its name via its pivoting anchor logo. Though a diminutive 37mm, the watch's broad hands and bold numerals are as conspicuous as a landmass on the Pacific horizon.
Jaeger-LeCoultre Deep Sea Chronograph, P545,244
Watchmaker of watchmakers, Jaeger-LeCoultre has supplied the likes of Patek Philippe, Audemars Piguet and Vacheron Constantin with its movements. This Deep Sea Chronograph is a design revived from the brand's historical archives, and is already generating quite a following. It's not hard to see why—who can resist those striking good looks?
Bremont S301/BK, P194,405.45
Bremont's Type 300 Supermarines take their name from another feisty little contraption, the Schneider Trophy-winning forebear of the Spitfire fighter. The case shaves 5mm off its predecessor's, the S200, but its vintage visage goes large on good looks.
Rolex Deepsea Sea-Dweller, P619,890.50
Nobody quite knew what to make of the Deepsea when it first came out, and low sales have made it a rare beast in relative terms. Large successive RRP rises have already seen early adopters of the big watch cashing in, and there's more expected to come. The Deepsea was a big move for Rolex, and it's the big moves that get collectors' attention further down the line.
Hermès Slim d'Hermès L'Heure Impatiente, P1,856,426
For those punctual to the point of anxiety, the Impatiente offers both an alarm and a 60-minute countdown to that alert, indicated by a single-note chime as graceful as the watch itself.
Rolex Sky-Dweller, P2,327,023.50
Rolex's most complicated watch for decades, the Sky-Dweller came as something of a surprise when it was announced a few years ago. It's technical ability is sure to see it continue to gain followers, and with it will come appreciation. Rolex are notorious for RRP rises, which will keep the value strong until the Sky-Dweller's eventual replacement.
Patek Philippe 5205, P2,384,144.30
The words 'Patek Philippe' and 'complicated' may not be quite enough to restart an economy, but they are certainly good enough to warrant comfortable appreciation. It doesn't have to be this model specifically—take your pick, they're all good. There's nothing quite like having a product of the world's number-one watchmaker residing on your wrist.
*£1 = P64.91
This story originally appeared on Esquire.co.uk. Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.