Why Buy A Limited Edition Watch?
Cynics will suggest that limited-edition luxury watches are a marketing ploy, and to a certain extent, they are right. A Swiss marque may produce a specially-designed timepiece in a small quantity to reinvigorate interest in a pre-existing model and to — in glib terms — “shift more units.”
The marketeers’ strategy, however, should not be condemned, as it works in favour of the watch lover. We buy luxury timepieces for their exceptional craftsmanship, their exclusivity, their elegance, their originality and their design flair. A limited-edition piece offers all of these qualities, but on a greater level. They are even more exclusive than their standard counterparts, they are usually more aesthetically quirky and they are made with the finest attention to detail.
What’s more, anyone familiar with the economic laws of supply and demand will know that their scarcity makes them much more valuable. Aaron Rich of Sotheby’s in New York told Business Week that “men’s timepieces make good investments if they are produced by one of the top brands and are extremely complex mechanically and limited in number.”
With this solid investment advice in mind, here are five recommendations for limited-edition pieces available at The Watch Gallery…
IWC Ingenieur Chronograph Silberpfeil
Every year, the world’s finest watchmakers gather in Geneva for SIHH (Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie) to reveal their latest designs and innovations. At the 2013 edition in January, IWC revealed the Ingenieur Chronograph Silberpfeil, a tribute to the Mercedes Silver Arrow W25 that revolutionised Grand Prix racing in the 1930’s.
An engraving of the vintage race car can be found on the caseback, along with the individual numbering of this 1,000-piece edition. The self-winding 89361 calibre movement found within is one of the finest in all Haute Horlogerie, and its flyback function will come in handy when measuring pit stop times.
The generous 45mm case is stainless steel, while the black rubber strap with brown alligator leather inlay provides a perfect combination of form and function. The unusual circular grain dial is a salute to the Silver Arrow W25, which had a similar pattern on its dashboard.
Motorsport fans will also be keen to learn that The Watch Gallery offers several IWC Ingenieur designs produced in conjunction the W25’s modern racing equivalent, the MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One™ Team.
Zenith El Primero Chronomaster Power Reserve The Watch Gallery Exclusive
A company named for the highest point in the stratosphere is bound to have lofty ambitions, and Zenith has been at the pinnacle of horological excellence since its foundation in 1865. A little over a century later, in 1969, the Swiss brand introduced the El Primero, which was one of the first automatic chronograph movements.
The El Primero calibre operates at 36,000 VpH (vibrations per hour), meaning it is capable of performing ten vibrations per second — most other movements will vibrate eight times per second at best. It is, therefore, the most accurate series-produced mechanical movement you can buy, and a breakthrough achievement in the world of watchmaking.
The Watch Gallery is proud to offer an exclusive El Primero Chronomaster Power Reserve model, limited to just ten pieces worldwide. The dial, power reserve indicator and stitching on the black alligator strap feature The Watch Gallery’s signature blue hue. Nowhere else in the world will you find this unique design.
At the time of writing, just three of these highly collectible watches remain, so act fast to avoid disappointment.
Compare and contrast the Watch Gallery exclusive model with a non-limited El Primero Chronomaster HERE »
Bell & Ross The Watch Gallery Exclusive BR 03-51 GMT-TWG
When Swiss designers Bruno Belamich and Carlos A. Rosillo came together in 1992, they created a company that offers exceptional watches for the most extreme professional conditions. Bell & Ross made the first automatic chronometer to be worn on a space mission, they provide highly durable anti-magnetic pieces to the French Security Service’s bomb disposal team and their Hydro Challenger holds the world record for water resistance, having functioned at a mind-boggling 11,000 metres below sea level.
Bell & Ross’ most popular watches are found in the iconic Aviation collection. Defined by a round dial set within a square stainless steel 42mm case, the BR 03 is considered the quintessential timepiece for the modern man.
Bell & Ross and The Watch Gallery have now combined forces to produce the BR 03-51 GMT-TWG, an exclusive limited-edition version of the BR 03 GMT. This model carries The Watch Gallery’s signature blue tones on both hour hands — the main one and the one on the second time zone sub dial. It also boasts a date display below the 12 o’clock Arabic numeral, a black PVD coated steel case and a distinctive carbon dial.
This brand-new creation is limited to just 50 pieces and available only at the Watch Gallery.
Other limited-edition Bell & Ross pieces include the altimeter-inspired BR01-96, the BR01-92 AIRSPEED that mimics an airspeed indicator, and the highly unusual duo of the BR01-92 HORIZON and BR01-92 HEADING INDICATOR.
Hublot King Power Usain Bolt
In the late 1970s, Breil watchmaker Carlo Crocco started his own company and worked hard to create the first ever watch with a natural rubber strap. He named it Hublot (the French word for “porthole”) and the Swiss brand has been at the forefront of luxury sports watch innovation ever since.
One such piece is the King Power Usain Bolt dedicated to the fastest man of all time. It features a 48mm case constructed with micro-blasted black ceramic and a gold strap made from the same synthetic leather as Bolt’s record-breaking shoes. Within the case you will find Hublot’s excellent HUB4100 self-winding chronograph movement and a matte black dial that features a silhouette of the sprinter pulling his trademark pointing pose.
The King Power Usain Bolt is limited to 250 pieces, so you may need to sprint to get the opportunity to own this special commemorative piece.
Other limited-edition models in the King Power collection include a Diego Maradona piece decorated in “Albiceleste” Argentinean colours, a lightweight carbon fibre Formula 1 edition and the distinctive Red Devil, dedicated to reigning Premier League champions Manchester Utd.
Breitling for Bentley Supersports Black & Orange Chronograph
In 1915, Breitling were responsible for the first ever chronograph wristwatch, and since 2000, the family-run Swiss luxury brand has been the only watchmaker to offer certified chronometers in all models. If Breitling had an equivalent in car manufacturing in terms of craftsmanship, cutting-edge design and a reputation for excellence, it would undoubtedly be Bentley.
It is no coincidence that both companies are represented by a winged ‘B’ logo, and that they have combined their expertise for a luxury collection: Breitling for Bentley.
The distinguishing feature of the limited-edition Supersports Black & Orange Chronograph is the imposing orange colour of the inner bezel and chronograph sub dials. The high contrast colouring brings an energy and vivacity that is evocative of the Bentley Continental GT Supersports, the grand touring coupé that revolutionised the marketplace upon its 2009 release.
This superb piece, limited to a run of 1,000, features a 49mm stainless steel case, a Bentley Speed bracelet and an engraving of the eponymous car on the caseback.
EXPLORE ALL MENS LIMITED EDITIONS »