Here’s my personal choice of three chronograph watches that caught my attention this year. They are mostly practical in function, unique in design and highly collectible.
This is probably the best Zenith watch to buy right now. It has the A384 case shape with the same dimensions as the 1969 model. Sized at 37mm the integrated lugs design wraps nicely around the wrist and has sufficient wrist presence despite the smaller dimensions. The sandblasted titanium case creates a highly attractive case complete with entirely matte pushers and crown. It alludes to a time of famous PVD treated automobile themed watches like the Monaco. A full black El Primero on the A384 case without a date is also new to Zenith. The watch represents a hybrid of innovation with stylistic cues from the past. Safe to say, this model while not limited, is very iconic, and will likely be highly collectible in the future. The watch is priced at 8400 CHF.
The Snoopy Speedmasters are possibly the most collectible of all modern Omega watches. The newest model rides on the wave of the Silver Snoopy craze, but is not just another lazy iteration. The new Snoopy 50th anniversary combines tradition with a unique x-factor, an innovative animation displayed on the caseback. The clever use of the movement makes for few to no modular changes. Aesthetically, the watch looks fantastic, with just the right amount of pomp. The watch retails at S$14,100.
Montblanc 1858 Split Second Chronograph Limited Edition of 8
Not a watch for the faint wristed, the newest iteration of the popular split second chronograph by Montblanc is the final choice in the list. It’s a large 44mm by 15mm watch, and has a busy tachymeter dial. But if you can forget those features and bask in the beauty of the Minerva based M16.31 movement, then you’re in for a real ride. The movement finishing is nothing short of brilliant, and what a sight it is with the centerpiece rattrapante mechanism. And yes, the fumé lacquer dial is also a stunner.
The Montblanc 1858 Split Second Chronograph is a Sincere (Singapore retailer) limited edition of 8 and is priced at S$51,000.
The three watches were sorted from low to high price, and coincidentally from smallest to largest case. Of the three, the Zenith makes the best daily wearer, for its stealthy look, modest size and automatic movement. The high beat El Primero is also highly accurate. The Omega is possibly the hottest non-Rolex/Patek sports model out there today, and is a truly fun piece. The Montblanc is the most tricky of the 3 excelling in almost every aspect except its size. Like a double edged sword, the larger case makes for a more visible movement to enjoy but also creates an otherwise classic looking watch in mammoth dimensions. Maybe only wear it on some days but for most just admiring the dial and the movement maybe sufficient.