4 minutes

Five Luxury Watches With Good Value for Money and the Potential to Appreciate

By Sebastian Swart

Many watch enthusiasts have been shaking their heads at the financial performance of certain luxury watches. It’s not uncommon for prices to deviate entirely from their former list prices and remain high in the sky. In another article, I talked about watches that you can buy for less than their list prices. This time, we’ll take a look at five timepieces with prices that have significantly increased in recent years, but which still offer good value for money. We’ve looked at some of the data we collected on used models between 2017 and 2023 and brought together some classics as well as some lesser-known models. What all these watches have in common is that they’re likely or very likely to appreciate in value. That means that they not only offer good value for money in the present, but also are full of potential for the future.

Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch “Tintin”

The Omega Speedmaster Professional “Tintin” Moonwatch Racing Dial ref. 311. performed excellently in the period from 2017 to 2023. The watch went from around $3,500 to around $14,000. That’s an appreciation of 300%.

This Moonwatch is nicknamed “Tintin” because the colors on the minute scale are reminiscent of the rocket that comic book heroes Tintin and Struppi took to the moon. Just like every other Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch model, the Tintin has a 42-mm, stainless steel case. Inside the watch ticks the Omega manual caliber 1861 (based on the Lemania 1873), with a power reserve of 48 hours. The Hesalite crystal and five-link stainless steel bracelet are standard.

Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch “TinTin” – Wertsteigerung um 305 %
The Omega Speedmaster Professional “Tintin” Moonwatch – 300% appreciation

Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711/1A-010

Patek Philippe is a star performer – how could it not be? – with its classic stainless steel Nautilus 5711/1A-010. It’s widely known that the price and value of this model have fluctuated over the years, so everything we say here holds true as of mid-November. At this point, the watch has appreciated 297% in six years. In other words, mint condition pieces are going for $122,000.

Patek Phillipe released the Nautilus 5711/1A-010 in 2006 on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the collection. In case you’ve forgotten, watch world star Gérald Genta designed the first model in 1976. According to Genta, he had scribbled the design on a restaurant napkin two years earlier – obviously with great success.

The main features of the Nautilus are its wide, octagonal bezel, the “ears” on the sides of the case, and its integrated bracelet. Inside the watch ticks the Patek Philippe in-house caliber 324 C, which offers a power reserve of 45 hours.

Klassenprimus von Patek Philippe – Nautilus 5711/1A-010
Head of its class from Patek Philippe – the Nautilus 5711/1A-010

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Jumbo 15202ST.OO.1240ST.01

This list wouldn’t be complete without a high-quality Audemars Piguet piece. This brand is defined almost exclusively by its successful Royal Oak line. Like the Patek Philippe Nautilus, the original Royal Oak is a Gérald Genta design. However, the Royal Oak was born in 1972, a few years before the Nautilus. The model is characterized by its octagonal bezel with eight screws – referred to as the porthole look – and its integrated bracelet.

The Royal Oak was the first luxury watch made of stainless steel. Until then, only watches made of precious metals were considered true luxury. These days the reference 15202ST.OO.1240ST.01, also known as the Royal Oak “Jumbo” Extra Thin, is especially popular. This 39-mm variant is powered by the Audemars Piguet in-house caliber 2121 with a power reserve of 40 hours.

Since 2017, the value of this watch has increased 240%. It went from around $20,000 to $68,000 (as of mid-November 2023).

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Jumbo 15202ST.OO.1240ST.01 – hervorragende Wertsteigerung
The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Jumbo 15202ST.OO.1240ST.01 – excellent appreciation

Rolex Daytona 116508 Green Dial Yellow Gold

The Geneva manufacturer Rolex has countless popular models on the market that are likely to stay firm or increase in value. Among them is the Rolex Cosmograph Daytona, one of the most popular watches out there. Since its initial release in 1963, it has come out in countless references. Pretty much all of those references have increased in value over the last six years.

The Rolex Daytona 116508 in 18-karat yellow gold with a green dial was very stable in value between 2017 and 2023. This reference’s case contains the Rolex in-house caliber 4130, which boasts a power reserve of 72 hours.

The facts: Whereas the 116508 cost around $27,000 in 2017, it now goes for around $80,000. That’s an appreciation of approximately 200%.

Bietet ein sehr gutes Preis-Leistungs-Verhältnis – Rolex Daytona 116508
Very good value for money – the Rolex Daytona 116508

Cartier Santos Carrée 2961 White Dial Gold and Steel

The French luxury watch and jewelry brand Cartier also has a model that has performed well in the last six years and still offers good value for money. I’m talking about the Santos Carrée 2961 with a white dial. The first Santos was designed by Louis Cartier back in 1904, making Santos the world’s first men’s wristwatch. One of its defining features are its large, slanted Roman numeral hour markers.

Cartier launched the Santos Carrée in 1978 and stopped production of it in the 1990s, meaning it’s already a vintage model. The watch is made of stainless steel and gold and is only 29 mm x 41 mm, making it the perfect watch for any gender. Inside it ticks an automatic Cartier movement based on the EA caliber 2671, which has a power reserve of 38 hours.

While many luxury watches have decreased in price in recent months, the Santos Carrée 2961 has been steadily increasing. In 2017 the watch went for around $1,700, while in late 2023 it’s going for around $4,400. So, it’s a good investment that still has a lot of potential.

Cartier Santos Carrée 2961 – Vintage-Uhr mit großem Potenzial
The Cartier Santos Carrée 2961 – a vintage watch with big potential

That’s it for our list of selected references with good value for money. All of these watches are from well-known luxury watch manufacturers and have the potential to remain stable or increase in value over time.

About the Author

Sebastian Swart

I've been using Chrono24 for years to buy and sell watches, as well as for research purposes. I've had an infatuation with watches for as long as I can remember. As a …

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