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Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Lady 67651OR.ZZ.1261OR.02 New Rose gold 33mm Quartz
TOP
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Lady 33mm Rose Gold Quartz 67651OR.Z...
AU$ 75,883
Free shipping
Professional dealer
485
US
Rolex Datejust 1603 Good Steel 36mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex Datejust 1603 Vintage 1975 Silver Sunburst Pie Pan Dial...
AU$ 6,075
Professional dealer
58
US
Girard Perregaux Bridges 84000-21-001-BB6A New Titanium 45mm Automatic
TOP
Girard Perregaux Neo Bridges
AU$ 25,889
Professional dealer
450
CH
Maurice Lacroix AIKON AI6088-SS002-030-1 New Steel 44mm Automatic
TOP
Maurice Lacroix AIKON Automatic Mercury 44mm
AU$ 8,131
Professional dealer
450
CH
Franck Muller Casablanca 7880 Very good Rose gold 47mm Automatic
TOP
Franck Muller Casablanca Chronographe 7880 18k pink gold
AU$ 26,145
Professional dealer
16
MC
Chopard Mille Miglia 168571-3007 New Steel 44mm Automatic Australia
TOP
Chopard Mille Miglia GTS Azzurro Chrono 44 mm Limited Edition...
AU$ 8,479
Professional dealer
8
AU
Omega Seamaster 2541.80 Good Steel 41mm Quartz Australia
Omega Seamaster Professional 300m
AU$ 3,150
Professional dealer
 
AU
Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch 311.33.40.30.02.001 New Steel 39.7mm Manual winding
TOP
Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch - 311.33.40.30.02.001...
AU$ 12,675
Professional dealer
527
DE
Vacheron Constantin Fiftysix 4400E/000A-B437 New Steel 40mm Automatic Australia
TOP
Vacheron Constantin Fiftysix Day-Date
AU$ 24,434
Free shipping
Professional dealer
70
AU
Rolex Submariner (No Date) 114060 New Steel 40mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex Submariner - Roulette - Limited Edition /10 Black Venom...
AU$ 26,929
Professional dealer
98
IT
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date 1500 Good Steel 34mm Automatic Australia, 3018
TOP
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date
AU$ 5,254
Private Seller
 
AU
Rolex Lady-Datejust 279384RBR Unworn Steel 28mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex Lady-Datejust 28 279384RBR Pink DIA Oyster-Band
AU$ 21,074
Professional dealer
637
DE
Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch 310.20.42.50.01.001 Very good Gold/Steel 42mm Manual winding
Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Apollo 11 50th Anniversairy Ref....
AU$ 18,777

Sold by Chrono24

DE
Rolex Daytona 16520 Very good Steel 40mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex Daytona Patrizzi
AU$ 47,140
Professional dealer
520
IT
Rolex Datejust II 116334 Very good Steel 41mm Automatic Australia, Sydney
TOP
Rolex Datejust II
AU$ 31,000
Private Seller
 
AU
Rolex GMT-Master II 116710BLNR Good Steel 40mm Automatic Australia
Rolex GMT-Master II "Batman" (2016)
AU$ 22,591
Professional dealer
8
AU
Zodiac ZO9401 Unworn Steel 40mm Automatic Australia, Castle Hill
TOP
Zodiac Aerospace GMT Limited Edition (182 pieces made)
AU$ 3,990
Private Seller
 
AU
Tudor Black Bay 79230R Unworn 41mm Automatic Australia, South Morang
TOP
Tudor Black Bay Red burgundy
AU$ 4,099
Private Seller
 
AU
IWC Da Vinci Automatic IW358101 New Steel 40.4mm Automatic Australia
TOP
IWC Da Vinci Automatic 150 Years
AU$ 10,395
Free shipping
Professional dealer
70
AU
Omega Constellation Quartz 123.10.35.60.02.001 Very good Steel 35mm Quartz Australia
Omega Constellation
AU$ 2,059
Professional dealer
 
AU
TAG Heuer Aquaracer 500M CAK211A.BA0833 Unworn Steel 43mm Automatic Australia, Epping
TOP
TAG Heuer Aquaracer 500M
AU$ 2,995
Private Seller
 
AU
TAG Heuer Carrera Porsche Chronograph Special Edition CBN2A1F.BA0643 Unworn Steel 44mm Automatic Australia, Brighton east
TOP
TAG Heuer Carrera Porsche Chronograph Special Edition
AU$ 8,000
Private Seller
 
AU
IWC Pilot Chronograph IW377726 New Steel 43mm Automatic
TOP
IWC Racing Green Chronograph Edition Watch Pilot - LIMITED...
AU$ 12,992
Professional dealer
527
DE
Patek Philippe Calatrava 3998 Very good Yellow gold 38.5mm Automatic
Patek Philippe Calatrava 18K (0,750) Gold Automatik Datum...
AU$ 19,347

Sold by Chrono24

DE
Rolex Datejust 126334 Very good Steel 41mm Automatic Australia
Rolex Datejust 41 White Gold with Black Dial (2019) [ON SALE]
AU$ 15,795
Professional dealer
8
AU
Patek Philippe Travel Time 7234R-001 Unworn Rose gold 37,5mm Automatic
TOP
Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time 7234R-001
AU$ 50,262
Professional dealer
637
DE
Breguet Classique Complications 5317pt/12/9v6 Very good Platinum 39mm Automatic
TOP
Breguet Classique Tourbillon Platinium Full Set
AU$ 72,097
Free shipping
Professional dealer
10
AD
Jaeger-LeCoultre 140.8.80S Very good Steel 37mm Automatic
TOP
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Perpetual Calendar
AU$ 18,777
Professional dealer
520
IT
Raymond Weil Freelancer 7730-BK-05207 Unworn Steel Automatic Australia
Raymond Weil Freelancer
AU$ 1,942
Professional dealer
 
AU
Omega Seamaster Diver 300 M 210.90.42.20.01.001 Unworn Titanium 42mm Automatic
TOP
Omega Seamaster Diver 300M Master Chronometer 007 Limited Ed.
AU$ 13,942
Professional dealer
5378
IT
Omega 22525000 Very good Steel 39mm Automatic Australia, Cremorne
TOP
Omega De Ville Prestige
AU$ 4,300
Private Seller
 
AU
Rolex Day-Date 36 18038 Very good Yellow gold Automatic
TOP
Rolex Day-Date Raro Quadrante Nigeria ref.18038
AU$ 28,522
Professional dealer
146
IT
Rolex Milgauss 116400 Very good Steel 40mm Automatic
Rolex Milgauss Automatik Edelstahl Herrenuhr Oyster Perpetual...
AU$ 11,963

Sold by Chrono24

DE
Rolex GMT-Master II 126710BLNR Very good Steel 40mm Automatic Australia
Rolex GMT-Master II "Batgirl" (2019)
AU$ 23,495
Professional dealer
8
AU
Franck Muller Vanguard V45SCDT Unworn Rose gold 44mm Automatic Australia
Franck Muller Vanguard Diamond Dial
AU$ 55,000
Professional dealer
9
AU
Breguet 5395PT/RS/9WU New Platinum 41mm Automatic Australia
Breguet Classique Tourbillon Extra-Plat Squellette 5395
AU$ 290,432
Free shipping
Professional dealer
70
AU
Breguet Tradition 7027 Very good Yellow gold 38mm Manual winding
TOP
Breguet Tradition
AU$ 22,104
Professional dealer
520
IT
Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch 311.32.40.30.02.001 Unworn Steel 39.7mm Manual winding
TOP
Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch Limited 39,7 mm -...
AU$ 12,361
Professional dealer
259
PL
Baume & Mercier Hampton 8749 Very good Steel 45mm Automatic
TOP
Baume & Mercier HAMPTON Square XL Dual Time Ref-M0A8749 Steel...
AU$ 2,844
Free shipping
Professional dealer
932
NL
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date 1500 Very good Steel 34mm Automatic Australia, Bassendean
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date
AU$ 3,800
Private Seller
AU
Rolex Daytona 16520 Very good Steel Automatic
TOP
Rolex Daytona Zenith ref. 16520 Glossy 3D Dial
AU$ 42,783
Professional dealer
146
IT
Rolex GMT-Master II 16713 Very good Gold/Steel 40mm Automatic
Rolex GMT-Master II Stahl / Gold Automatik Herrenuhr Oyster...
AU$ 16,242

Sold by Chrono24

DE
Rolex Explorer II 216570 Very good Steel 42mm Automatic Australia
Rolex Explorer II Black (2015)
AU$ 14,305
Professional dealer
8
AU
Rolex GMT-Master II 126710BLRO Unworn Steel 40mm Automatic Australia
Rolex GMT-Master II Pepsi
AU$ 32,990
Professional dealer
9
AU
Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Duoface Q3848420 or 3848420 New Steel 47mm Manual winding Australia
Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Classic Large Duoface Small Second...
AU$ 11,757
Free shipping
Professional dealer
70
AU
Rolex Submariner (No Date) 5513 Good Steel 40mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex Submariner Pallettoni
AU$ 22,580
Professional dealer
520
IT
Rolex Day-Date 36 1803 Very good Yellow gold 36mm Automatic Australia
Rolex Day-Date
AU$ 19,900
Free shipping
Professional dealer
 
AU
IWC Portuguese Yacht Club Chronograph iw390204 Very good Steel 45mm Automatic
TOP
IWC Portuguese Yacht Club 43MM Chronograph Automatic REF....
AU$ 10,292
Free shipping
Professional dealer
932
NL
Rolex Sea-Dweller 4000 16600 Very good Steel Automatic Australia, Townsville
Rolex Sea-Dweller everything you'd expect in buying a perfect...
AU$ 13,000
Private Seller
AU
Ulysse Nardin Marine Chronometer 41mm 263-66 Very good Steel 41mm Automatic
TOP
Ulysse Nardin Marine Chronometer 41 mm
AU$ 4,965
Professional dealer
24
CH
Rolex GMT-Master II 16710 Very good Steel 40mm Automatic
Rolex GMT Master II Automatik Edelstahl Herrenuhr Oyster...
AU$ 17,715

Sold by Chrono24

DE
Rolex Submariner Date 16610LV Very good Steel 40mm Automatic Australia
Rolex Submariner Date "Kermit" (2010)
AU$ 23,518
Professional dealer
8
AU
Rolex Datejust 126233 Unworn Gold/Steel 36mm Automatic Australia
Rolex Datejust
AU$ 24,550
Professional dealer
9
AU
Hublot Big Bang Unico 411.HX.1170.RX New Ceramic 42mm Automatic Australia
TOP
Hublot Big Bang Unico White Ceramic 42 mm
AU$ 24,545
Free shipping
Professional dealer
70
AU
Piaget P10098 Very good White gold 28mm Manual winding
TOP
Piaget Mècanique Diamonds Set
AU$ 16,875
Professional dealer
520
IT
Rolex Explorer 5500 Very good Steel 34mm Automatic Australia
Rolex Explorer I
AU$ 26,000
Free shipping
Professional dealer
 
AU
Chopard Happy Sport 288499 Very good Steel 42mm Quartz
TOP
Chopard Happy Fish Chronograph Watch 42 MM - Ref 288499-3016
AU$ 6,172
Free shipping
Professional dealer
932
NL
TAG Heuer Aquaracer 300M WAF1110 Good Steel Quartz Australia, Wollongong
TAG Heuer Aquaracer 300M
AU$ 850
Private Seller
 
AU
Blancpain Villeret 6025AS-3430-55 New Platinum
TOP
Blancpain Villeret ,Métiers Art Tourbillon Squelette 8 Juors...
Price on request
Professional dealer
10
ES
Rolex Datejust 16014 Very good Gold/Steel 36mm Automatic
Rolex Datejust 36 STAHL / WEISSGOLD Automatik Herrenuhr Oyster...
AU$ 7,574

Sold by Chrono24

DE
Rolex Milgauss 116400 Good Steel 40mm Automatic Australia
Rolex Milgauss (2010)
AU$ 11,479
Professional dealer
8
AU
Rolex Datejust 126333 Unworn Gold/Steel 41mm Automatic Australia
Rolex Datejust 41mm Champagne Dial Two Tone Jubilee Bracelet
AU$ 20,888
Professional dealer
9
AU
Jaeger-LeCoultre Atmos Q5745102 or 5745102 New 245mm Australia
Jaeger-LeCoultre Atmos du Millenaire Transparente Clock
AU$ 98,353
Free shipping
Professional dealer
70
AU
Rolex Submariner Date 16613 Very good Gold/Steel 40mm Automatic
Rolex Submariner Stahl / Gold Diamanten Automatik Herrenuhr...
AU$ 17,509

Sold by Chrono24

DE

Swiss Watches: World-Renowned Timepieces

Swiss watches are synonymous with precision and luxury. The most well-known names in the business, with few exceptions, all hail from this Alpine country. Rolex, Omega, IWC, and Breitling all represent tradition and high quality.


This page contains information about:


Everything to Know About Swiss Watches in This Article

  • Buying advice for Swiss-made watches
  • Watches in different price ranges
  • Manufacturers, collections, and models
  • History of the Swiss watch industry

Which Swiss Watch Should I Buy?

If you want to buy a Swiss watch, you have a wide range of options. The right way to find out which watch is best for you is to ask yourself the following question: How much do I want to spend?

A new, brand-name Swiss watch with a mechanical movement can cost as little as 1,000 euros. You can find watches from manufacturers such as Chronoswiss, Maurice Lacroix, Oris, and Raymond Weil in this price range. Some series from these manufacturers are more expensive, however. For example, Raymond Weil's Nabucco chronograph costs around 3,000 euros new with a titanium case. TAG Heuer and Tissot also have a large selection of watches available for less than 5,000 euros.

Rolex and Omega are probably the most well-known representatives of Swiss luxury watches. The legendary Omega Speedmaster Professional is available in many different variations for less than 5,000 euros. The version closest to the original Moonwatch chronograph, which you can find under reference number 311.30.42.30.01.005, costs around 3,500 euros and has a stainless steel case. The material certainly influences the price, as cases made of precious metals are much more expensive than those made of stainless steel.

An Omega diving watch from the Seamaster collection with a gold case costs around 15,000 euros. The Rolex Submariner without a date display and a stainless steel case costs around 6,500 euros new. You should be prepared to spend at least 23,000 euros for a yellow gold Submariner, and 25,000 euros for a Rolex Daytona.

Patek Philippe's Nautilus is one of the most sought-after and expensive stainless steel sports watches from Switzerland. Without any complications, the women's version costs 20,000 euros, and the men's 25,000 euros. With a white gold or platinum case, the price jumps to 140,000 euros. The Calatrava, also from Patek Philippe, is the definition of a classic, elegant dress watch. New, the most popular version costs around 15,000 euros.

If you decide to go with a watch from Breguet or Blancpain, expect prices over 100,000 euros. Cases made of precious metals, diamond-set cases and straps, and intricate complications such a tourbillon increase the value of such watches. The newcomer Hublot also has some watches in this price range. The futuristic MP-05 LaFerrari watch usually costs 200,000 euros. The version with a sapphire glass case is over double the price, costing more than 400,000 euros.


Watches: Iconic Exports

Watches are a defining part of Switzerland's cultural image. They're more iconic than the banks and the cheese; only chocolate ranked "more Swiss" than watches according to a survey of participants from 15 different countries.

About 30 million watches leave the production halls of this little Alpine country every year. The variety amongst these watches is impressive. They range from traditional gold watches with complications such as a:

  • Moon phase display
  • Perpetual calendar
  • Minute repeater
  • Double chronograph

to diving and pilot's watches. Some of the Swiss companies even produce high-tech smartwatches. Many of these watches function as status symbols, ignoring their actual intended functions. Many diving watches from the Seamaster and Submariner collections will never go underwater, and only a small number of the pilot's watches sold by IWC or Breitling are actually worn in the cockpit. These watches work equally well as a tool watch or a luxury lifestyle object.

There are also mass market affordable watches, such as the famous quartz-powered Swatch with its bright and colorful plastic case. There are now mechanical versions with a simple 51-piece movement. The typical Swatch looks somewhat cheap and is not taken seriously by many watch fans, but certain models have sold at high prices as vintage watches. Furthermore, the Swatch is significantly responsible for helping the Swiss watch industry survive the Quartz Crisis of the 1970s and 80s. The Swatch watch, trendy and colorful, broke Swiss watches out of their conservative, stuffy image and attracted a new target audience. Above all, young people were attracted to this bright and simple watch.

However, luxury watches are what people think of when they think of Swiss watches. Switzerland leads the world in watch exports if you don't rank by number of timepieces. While only about 2% of watches sold worldwide come from Switzerland, they are worth 60% of the total value.

Many well-known brands with long watchmaking traditions belong to the Swatch Group (market share: 18%) or to luxury goods concerns like Richemont (market share: 16%) or Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH, market share: 5%). Rolex is the largest independent Swiss luxury watch manufacturer (market share: 12%). Their independent status greatly contributes to their outstanding reputation.


Overview of the Most Important Swiss Luxury Watch Manufacturers

Manufacturer Founding year Location of headquarters Parent group
Audemars Piguet 1875 Le Brassus Independent
Blancpain 1735 Le Brassus Swatch Group
Breguet 1775 L'Abbaye Swatch Group
Breitling 1884 Grenchen Independent
Chopard 1860 Geneva Independent
Hublot 1980 Nyon LVMH
IWC 1868 Schaffhausen Richemont
Jaeger-LeCoultre 1833 Le Sentier Richemont
Longines 1832 Saint-Imier Swatch Group
Omega 1848 Biel/Bienne Swatch Group
Patek Philippe 1851 Geneva Independent
Rolex 1905 Geneva Independent
TAG Heuer 1860 La Chaux-de-Fonds LVMH
Vacheron Constantin 1755 Plan-les-Ouates Richemont
Zenith 1865 Le Locle LVMH

Rolex

Rolex is number one amongst the large manufacturers. The Geneva-based manufacturer has been in business since 1905. Rolex produces some of the most famous and beloved watch models in the world, such as the Submariner, Daytona, and Datejust.

The Submariner is the definition of a diving watch, the Daytona is one of the most famous chronographs, and the Datejust embodies elegance. Rolex's pilot's watch is the Air King, and their GMT Master II displays a second time zone. With the invention of the perpetual rotor, Rolex significantly contributed to the breakthrough of the automatic watch in the 1930s. Every year, the manufacturer sells around 800,000 watches featuring their iconic five-point crown. Rolex doesn't publish any official sales numbers. However, since Rolex has their watches certified by the Official Swiss Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC), we can calculate how many Rolex watches are produced based on the COSC's publications.


Omega

The most famous man to wear a Rolex is undoubtedly James Bond. He completes many of his missions with a Submariner on his wrist. However, the British secret agent switched to Omega, a member of the Swatch Group, in 1995. Omega plays a central role in the Swatch Group's company strategy, as they see the brand as a strong competitor for Rolex. Rolex isn't the only manufacturer with legendary watch models; Omega has their own to be proud of. The Seamaster is a diving watch collection that's been in production since 1948. The famous French oceanographer Jacques Cousteau wore a Seamaster. Another iconic Omega watch is the Speedmaster Professional. "Speedy," as it's nicknamed by fans, was the official NASA watch on the Apollo missions, making it the first watch on the Moon in 1969. The so-called Moonwatch is available today, almost unchanged from the original version, but now features a modern Co-Axial caliber and comes in many special limited editions. There's also the De Ville series, which showcases Omega's classic side.


International Watch Company (IWC)

IWC, based in Schaffhausen, also offers elegant Swiss watches, such as the Portugieser. They're even more famous for their pilot's watches, though; their Big Pilot watch and the Mark series are considered excellent pilot's watches. The Mark 11 was the official service watch of Royal Air Force pilots for decades.


Breitling

Breitling is a strong competitor for IWC in the realm of pilot's watches. Breitling's Navitimer is considered one of the most important pilot's watches. The watch, which was introduced in 1952, has a special slide rule function. It has two logarithmic scales on the dial which you can turn to perform various calculations, such as distance and fuel consumption. Breitling also offers powerful diving watches with their Superocean series and some versions of the Avenger. Rolex, Omega, IWC, and Breitling are all considered to be on the same level, thus Breitling also has a conservative, elegant line as well, the Transocean. Besides mechanical timepieces, Breitling also offers quartz watches with refined technology, such as the Emergency with an integrated distress beacon.


Patek Philippe

One rung higher on the luxury watch ladder is Patek Philippe. It's clear from the start that this manufacturer is a bit different: Most of their cases are made of solid gold. In the Swiss watch industry, steel cases are used around 50% of the time. Precious metals like gold and platinum are only used around 2% of the time. Patek's Calatrava collection is a symbol of the company and the epitome of a stylish dress watch. This watch collection debuted in 1932 and was inspired by the Bauhaus art movement. Patek Philippe's Nautilus also has a special position in their portfolio. It's a stainless steel sports watch waterproof to 120 m (12 bar) – all unusual qualities for a Patek watch. The company has a long history of watchmaking. The independent family business has existed under this name since 1851. Until 2009, Patek Philippe used the Geneva Seal as a symbol of high Swiss quality. Now, the company uses their own seal with even stricter standards.


Blancpain, Breguet, Jaeger-LeCoultre

Blancpain and Breguet have been in business even longer. Today, they're both members of the Swatch Group. Abraham-Louis Breguet founded his company in 1775. He's responsible for countless important watchmaking inventions, such as the tourbillon. Blancpain has been around since 1735. Their most famous series is the Fifty Fathoms diving watch. Brands such as Patek Philippe, Breguet, and Blancpain, are representative of the conservative values of the Swiss watch industry. This applies to Jaeger-LeCoultre as well. This manufacturer has been producing high-quality watches since 1833. Their Reverso is one of the most popular rectangular watches.


Hublot

Hublot takes an entirely different approach. This relatively new manufacturer plays the role of the rebel most excellently. One distinctive Hublot feature is their unusual, square-edged porthole design, which occasionally borders on the bizarre. Legibility isn't Hublot's main concern. Instead, they show a preference for the use of unusual materials such as ceramic or titanium. With their patented Magic Gold alloy, Hublot broke new ground. Magic Gold is an incredibly scratch-resistant alloy composed of gold and ceramic. Magic Gold comes quite close to the ideal, everlasting case material. Hublot was founded in 1980. In 2005, under new leadership, they introduced the Big Bang series. The Big Bang caused a sharp increase in sales, catapulting this Genevan manufacturer into the same league as other well-known Swiss brands. The somewhat calmer Hublot alternative to the Big Bang is the Classic Fusion.


Audemars Piguet

Hublot is not without precedent. Audemars Piguet's Royal Oak, introduced in 1972, as well as their Royal Oak Offshore, inspired Hublot's designs. The wide bezel with visible screws was directly influenced by the Royal Oak.


TAG Heuer

When it comes to TAG Heuer, it's all about timing. They patented their first stopwatch mechanism in 1882. TAG Heuer has dedicated themselves to the art of racing ever since – it's not a coincidence that their most well-known series is called the Carrera. Even the rectangularMonaco is a legend amongst racing watches. The actor Steve McQueen wore a Monaco in the film Le Mans.


Tissot

Watches from TAG Heuer are in a moderate price range. This applies to Tissot as well. Aside from classic mechanical watches, Tissot offers modern quartz watches as well. The T-Touch Expert Solar is solar powered. It's a multi-function watch with background lighting, a second time zone display, chronograph function, timer, alarm, compass, barometer function, and many other extras. The watch has a titanium case and is waterproof to 100 m (10 bar). The T-Touch Expert Solar has features that only an electric-powered watch can offer. Such an array of functions is impossible for a mechanical watch, especially one that costs less than 1,000 euros.

Other manufacturers also combine Swiss quality with moderate prices, such as Longines, Raymond Weil, or Maurice Lacroix. These companies often use calibers from the world's largest ébauche manufacturer, ETA SA Manufacture Horlogère Suisse, which is also based in Switzerland. The Swiss company Sellita also offers movements that can be found in the watches of many famous manufacturers. Only a few brands produce their own calibers, such as Rolex and Patek Philippe. !Zenith has some of the most important automatic chronograph movements in watch history. The fast-paced El Primero caused a stir when it was released in 1969; it even had a watch named after it.


Top 10 Swiss Luxury Watch Manufacturers According to Production Numbers

Manufacturer Number of watches produced per year
Rolex 800,000
Omega 700,000
Breitling 170,000
IWC 100,000
Chopard 80,000
Jaeger-LeCoultre 75,000
Patek Philippe 60,000
Hublot 40,000
Audemars Piguet 37,000
Zenith 35,000

Post-Quartz Crisis Revival

The Swiss watch industry began in the 18th century. Up until the second half of the 19th century, Switzerland was considered a place where it was easy to produce watches affordably. IWC, with roots in the United States, based their business model on this concept.

After many successful years, the industry suffered in the 1970s and 80s during the Quartz Crisis. Cheap, mass-produced quartz watches produced in Asia endangered traditional Swiss production. Some manufacturers disappeared forever and many workers lost their jobs. Yet surprisingly, Swiss watches later experienced a renaissance which has lasted to this day. The fascination with the technical genius that goes into mechanical watches enthralls watch lovers all over the world. Many manufacturers with longer histories are no longer independent, however. Merging with a large concern, such as the Swatch Group, Richemont, or LVMH, saved many of these manufacturers from going under.

Unexpected competition has popped up since then. The German town of Glashütte was trapped behind the Iron Curtain in East Germany until 1990. Watches have been produced in Glashütte since the mid-19th century, but they were far from being luxury watches when Germany was divided. Now, other manufacturers such as A. Lange & Söhne and Glashütte Original have established themselves in Glashütte, making Glashütte watches true competition for Swiss manufacturers.