Watches: aœord­able style

Stylish and func­tional diver’s watches for a frac­tion of the price of a new or used Omega or Rolex

CAR (UK) - - Contents -

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OW MUCH DO you want a bench­mark diver’s watch from one of the big Swiss names? Omega’s Sea­mas­ter has al­most tre­bled in price since 2000. Back then, it cost £1050. It is now £2920. Its new co-ax­ial move­ment is more so­phis­ti­cated, but not enough to jus­tify a price hike like that alone.

And buy­ing used won’t help. The clas­sic watch mar­ket has been hit by the same su­per-in­fla­tion as the clas­sic car mar­ket. A Sea­mas­ter bought new in 2000 will cost you £2500 from a dealer now if it has its orig­i­nal box and pa­pers.

Plainly, we still want th­ese watches, or the man­u­fac­tur­ers wouldn’t be able to keep putting the prices up. But you can have a clas­sic, au­to­matic diver’s watch on a stain­less-steel bracelet from a brand with a long his­tory of mak­ing them for a tiny frac­tion of what you’d pay for essen­tially the same thing from Omega or Rolex. BEN OLIVER @thebeno­liver

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