Some watches are harder to get than others. Whether they’re limited editions, or only offered in a single country, or just not hitting the shelves fast enough to keep up with demand, these watches generally enjoy a greater level of attention thanks to their scarcity. Usually, the hype around these kinds of watches is quick to subside, but sometimes, they become classics. In this edition of The Cultivated Wrist, we’re looking at a few that we think have the legs to remain interesting and valuable well into the future.
During the 2017 Dubai Watch Week, TAG Heuer revealed a new edition of their Autavia throwback watch made exclusively for retailers in Dubai. The original version of the watch has been hugely popular thanks to its faithful reproduction of the original Autavia Ref. 2446 with Mark Three dial (which was chosen via an online vote by fans). The UAE version of the watch adds a new colorway consisting of a rich brown bezel and a creamy sand colored dial with light brown registers. It’s a theme that fits the watch remarkably well, and unless you live in Dubai, you’ll have a hard time getting your hands on one. Keep an eye on our listing for any action around this highly sought after Autavia.
The Japanese brand Grand Seiko has been increasing their presence in US markets in recent years, and we’re all the better for it. While you’ve undoubtedly heard of their entry level brand (Seiko), you may be surprised at the high level of watchmaking taking place at Grand Seiko, a fully vertically integrated manufacturer. The SBGR305 (yes it sounds like a fax machine) represents the best of the Grand Seiko brand, with an understated design that doesn’t skimp on (high quality) details. At a glance, this is a basic three-hander, but a closer look reveals a trove of craftsmanship. The case is polished using the zaratsu sword-polishing technique, the dial itself is “frosted” which means you’ll see a sand-like texture through the “high-definition” crystal. Less than 1,000 examples of the SBGR305 made their way to the public, but you can find one on StockX right here with an Ask of $6,810.
When the popular online watch publication known as HODINKEE announced their own limited edition TAG Heuer, the Skipper, it was sold out within hours. This is due to the fact the just 125 examples were offered (a proper Limited Edition), as well as the watch being, well, really f’n cool. The watch features a deep blue dial, a tri-color totalizer at 9 o’clock, and an impeccable 39mm case. It’s a fun watch inspired by the original reference 7754 Heuer Skipper without replicating it. What’s not to love? Getting your hands on one of these remains a tricky proposition, so keep an eye on the StockX listing for any activity.
This is a watch we’ve talked about before, and it’s not the only Speedmaster that’s tricky to get your hands on, but it deserves a spot on this list for getting it right. Omega has never been shy about producing “Limited Edition” watches with production runs that number deep into the thousands, but the Speedy Tuesday is a hat tip to their dedicated fan base, and it also honors one of the coolest Speedmasters of history, the Alaska Project III from 1978. There are no superfluous design elements, no numbered edition on the dial, this is just a no-nonsense kick-ass Speedmaster. There’s currently an Ask of $8,600 on this watch right here.