The quartz watch threatened the future of the mechanical watch industry during the Quartz Crisis of the 1970s and 80s. Ever since, there’s been a stigma around quartz timepieces. Many believe that because they’re less expensive, they’re lesser than. Others associate them with women’s watches, which are often mistaken for being inferior. However, it’s worth getting to know the quartz movement and the watches that bear it. Some famous models come equipped with quartz movements, like the Rolex Oysterquartz and Patek Phillipe Ellipse Reference 3587. Breitling uses their COSC-certified SuperQuartz movement in variations of the Colt, Exospace, and Emergency. You might be surprised at how many of your favorite models are available in quartz. Here, we’ve compiled a collection of models from our inventory that might make you rethink the misconceptions around quartz.
The Cellini marked Rolex’s first foray into the realm of dress watches when it debuted in 1928. Over the years, the model has grown and evolved into a number of iterations, including the Classic Danaos, Cestello, and Quartz. Though the model was originally a men’s watch, it also developed into a ladies’ collection. The women’s line of the Cellini also includes a quartz variation, called the Cellissima. Rolex gives the Cellissima classic feminine touches, like a diamond bezel and a mother of pearl dial. Though it’s simple and time-only, the Cellini is a powerful collection, worn by figures like President Barak Obama. In turn, the ladies’ variation gives off an equally potent energy.
Cartier Tank Solo
The Cartier Tank is an iconic model in the brand’s catalog. Like the Cellini, the Tank also originated in the pre-quartz era. It exists in a number of varieties, including the Solo, Americaine, and Louis Cartier. Since then, Cartier has added quartz variations to the collection as well. Here, you get all of the signature Cartier touches. It features Roman numeral hour markers, sword shaped hands, and a blue cabochon crown. Inside, you’ll find Cartier’s own Caliber 690 quartz precision movement, containing seven jewels. There’s one other key difference between the quartz and automatic models aside from the movement. The quartz is available in two smaller case sizes. On the other hand, the automatic is only available in one, larger, and more modern size.
TAG Heuer Carrera Panamericana Special Edition
The Heuer brand originally named the Carrera collection after the famous Carrera Panamericana border-to-border race through the roads of Mexico. In the new millennium, TAG Heuer decided to commemorate the race with a special edition of the iconic model. The Carrera Panamericana Special Edition comes equipped with all the iconic features of the collection. It showcases an ultra-sporty, racing aesthetic with a triple register chronograph function and tachymeter scale around the bezel. The caseback gets a special touch with the stamp of the Panamericana seal. Inside the watch, you’ll find none other than a quartz movement.
Patek Philippe Twenty-4
Patek Philippe launched the Twenty-4 collection in 1999 as the brand’s first dedicated ladies line. Similar to the ladies Cellini, the models in the Twenty-4 collection come with some traditionally feminine elements, like gem setting. However, the stylistic and functional options in the Twenty-4 go far beyond a diamond bezel. For instance, models are available with square or round cases, Roman or Arabic numerals, and stainless steel or precious metals. In addition, you can choose between an automatic or quartz variation. This particular eternal gray iteration features a sunburst dial and Patek Philippe’s Caliber E15 quartz movement.
OMEGA Seamaster 300M
Unlike some of the other models, OMEGA originally introduced the Seamaster 300M as a quartz-only model back in 1993. Since then, the brand has added an automatic variation. However, it’s refreshing to see this addition to the brand’s catalog a decade after the quartz craze. Just two years after its debut, the Seamaster 300M gained recognition on the wrist of James Bond in the film Golden Eye. Since then, the model has appeared in every subsequent 007 film in both quartz and automatic variations. The Seamaster 300M seemed like the perfect one to close out the article on quartz. For those who think quartz is reserved for ladies’ models or mediocre models, look to the special agent himself. In our culture, Bond has become the archetype for power, poise, and masculinity, and you can find him wearing a quartz.