The Rolex Submariner isn't just the most recognizable Rolex watch; it's the most recognizable, copied, coveted, and referenced luxury watch model in the world. But can the ultimate Rolex dive watch stand the pressure against at $3,700 Oris Aquis with nothing to prove and value to burn? Tonight, Tim Mosso talks about high-value alternatives to hype watches and how to collect watches on a budget. Watch collectors who spend less to get more will relish tonight's luxury watch comparisons.
In 1953, the Rolex Submariner helped to define the modern dive watch. With a screw-down crown, rotating bezel, abundant water resistance, and running seconds, the Submariner immediately became the Rolex sports watch of reference. It was worn by Jacques Cousteau, James Bond, and COMEX divers. Even in a modern era that has witnessed the meteoric rise of interest in the Rolex Daytona and Rolex GMT-Master II, the Submariner remains the longest-running "core" Rolex sports model. And at a price $10,250, the Submariner sells new for thousands less than its used price - a key measure of demand outstripping supply.
But the Oris Aquis Date has plenty to say about value in dive watches. Launched in 2021, the 41.5m Aquis Date dive watch even matches the Rolex Submariner "Kermit's" green bezel look. Moreover, Oris offers features the Rolex can't match including a quick-release bracelet, a standard accessory strap, a sapphire display caseback, a 5-day power reserve, and a ten-year warranty. Oris has so much confidence in its manufacture caliber 400 that it recommends a ten-year interval between regular service. And with a 300-meter diving depth, the Oris Aquis can follow the Rolex Sub wherever it goes. And we saved the best part for last; the 41.5mm Oris Aquis Date costs only $3,700 with calibre 400.
As with the Rolex Submariner, the Patek Philippe Nautilus 5811/1G-001 is a fine watch whose legend has become as much a challenge as an asset. The sheer baggage associated with a watch so steeped in social media hype means that even those with the requisite budget to buy the $69,970 Nautilus 5811 might think twice before doing so. And aftermarket prices for the newest Nautilus Jumbo are even crazier at over $170,000.
The Cartier Santos is a worthwhile alternative for both value hunters and high-rollers who prefer discretion. With a history dating back to 1904, the Santos is both the world's first pilot watch and one of the first wristwatches of any kind. Since its 2018 redesign, the Cartier Santos has offered all the fun of an integrated bracelet steel sports watch without the unwanted attention that a hype watch can draw. With 100-meter water resistance, an antimagnetic movement, a quick-release bracelet that can be sized without tools, the Santos is a winner among sports watches. And with a retail price of $7,750, the Santos is a remarkable value with a superb eight-year warranty.
Additional watches mentioned in this episode include the Damasko DC86, the Sartory Billard SB05, the Zenith Chronomaster Sport, and the RGM Model 300 Professional Diver
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