It is not too late to get to the topic. Today I bring you a ‘controversial’ topic. This topic has not only reached a consensus among world watch enthusiasts, but I have not even come up with my own answer. The question is, ‘Who are the 3 major brands in the watch world’?
We know that ‘traditional troika for watchmaking’ has been circulating in the watch world. The troika refers to the three major brands of Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin and Audemars Piguet. For a long time in the past, it has been recognized by watch lovers worldwide. However, today’s times are different, and the ‘seat’ of members of the watch world is also changing. Some brands are ‘building hegemony,’ while others are losing ‘authority.’ Not long ago, a enthusiast raised the topic of ‘Why Rolex is not one of the top 3 brands in the watch world’, which caused a lot of discussions among watch enthusiasts. Many enthusiasts around the world put forward their views and expressed ‘ The brands in the traditional watchmaking troika have questioned, and even put forward the idea of replacing the members of the troika, and there is constant discussion. Below, I will show you various views from different aspects, and my thoughts. And in the end, I am eager to hear your voice. Who are the 3 major brands in your mind?
For the sake of fairness, I chose three brands’ most representative gold case chronographs. From top to bottom, they are Patek Philippe 5170 chronograph, Vacheron Constantin Harmony chronograph, and Audemars Piguet Royal Oak offshore chronograph.
First, I want to show you why Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin, and Audemars Piguet are ‘trolleys for traditional watchmaking’?
‘Traditional troika for watchmaking’, in other words, can be understood as the three most powerful brands in traditional watchmaking. Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin and Audemars Piguet were once the three major brands recognized by watch lovers around the world. As the top three in the world of watches and clocks, the reasons for ‘king the king’ are as follows:
First, Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin and Audemars Piguet, members of the ‘troika’, are the oldest brands in the world of watches and clocks. Patek Philippe was founded in 1839, Vacheron Constantin was founded in 1755, and Audemars Piguet was founded in 1875. The ‘troika’ has a longer history than many watch brands.
Secondly, the ‘troika members’ Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin and Audemars Piguet have a continuous and uninterrupted brand history. Since the brand was established, they have been continuously producing clocks (pocket watches, watches). The watch production has not been stopped due to historical reasons or brand sales and sales, and the brand has always maintained its standard.
Third, Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin, and Audemars Piguet, members of the ‘troika’, have continued to produce and adhere to the ‘advanced watchmaking’ route and continue to manufacture complex and large complex watches. Watches have always maintained a high standard and are polished and decorated by hand. Although the ‘troika’ has long used outsourced movements, the outsourced movements have been polished, decorated and modified with high quality, and the ‘troika’ has its own style and standards.
It is through the above three conditions that the status of Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin, and Audemars Piguet is established. If these three conditions are applied to other watch brands, other brands will not meet the above conditions. However, some watch enthusiasts have put forward different opinions, and there is no lack of refutation. Some people have suggested that Audemars Piguet should withdraw from the ‘troika’. The reason is that, unlike Patek Philippe and Vacheron Constantin, Audemars Piguet currently has a unique situation of Royal Oak and Royal Oak offshore. Some people think that Audemars Piguet represented by Royal Oak and Hublot are more similar. But Audemars Piguet’s proponents believe that Royal Oak shows a stronger appeal than other sports watches, so Audemars Piguet should be retained.
Rolex’s most representative all-gold day date (pictured 228238)
Why can’t Rolex be selected as a ‘troika’?
From the current situation, there are two kings in the watch world, namely Patek Philippe and Rolex. The status of these two kings is obvious to all. Patek Philippe and Rolex have highly consistent reasons for being king. Many of Patek Philippe’s and Rolex’s watches on sale are currently popular and hot-selling objects. Even so, it still makes global players want to stop; Patek Philippe and Rolex have divided up the secondary market represented by auctions in addition to the primary market. The auction market has long been divided by Patek Philippe and Rolex, both of which set the auction world record and broke their previous records. This makes it impossible for any other brand to compete with it. Rolex is fully equipped with the ability to ‘share the world’ with Patek Philippe, not only the world’s first but also the world’s second. Opponents argue that this does not make Rolex a member of the ‘traditional watchmaking troika’.
Rolex’s most representative sports watch, submariner (pictured 116610)
Opponents believe that the main problem for Rolex is that Rolex’s philosophy has always been to make strong and durable watches. Rolex never produces complex watches, including perpetual calendars, tourbillons, three-question repeaters, and chasing hands. Rolex only improves the accuracy and durability of watches within the scope of three-hand watches and calendar watches. Someone pointed out more directly that Rolex produced ‘tool watches’ rather than ‘traditional fine watchmaking’. I once saw a sentence that impressed me and was very worried. ‘When people are talking about the fine craftsmanship of traditional fine watchmaking, you stand up and say that Rolex is sturdy and durable, obviously these watches are not at the same level.’ . From the perspective of production volume, the annual production (predicted quantity) of 1 million Rolex is compared with the annual output of about 50,000 of brands such as Patek Philippe, which destined that Rolex is industrial-grade manufacturing rather than traditional watchmaking. From a price point of view, some Rolex watches are in the ‘affordable’ range, and the entry price of a ‘troika’ can buy two to three Rolex. Another very amazing reason is that some people have suggested that Rolex is a brand that no one knows in the world. Many people who do n’t understand watches also have Rolex, which will affect Rolex’s status among players (this is really a wonderful reason). Therefore, Rolex cannot be placed in the ‘troika’.
Candidates other than Rolex are equally controversial
Outside Rolex, the brands with the highest voices include Breguet, Blancpain, Lange, Jaeger-LeCoultre and even RICHARD MILLE. Their advocates believe that these brands have enough ability to win the top three brands in the watch industry, but opponents have also made their own comments. And I will show you these views in different categories.
Blancpain 6654 moon calendar
The first is Breguet and Blancpain. Breguet and Blancpain also have a long history and are proficient in large complex functions. They have the same level of status as Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin and Audemars Piguet, and are strong competitors for troikas. But opponents believe that their problem is that there is no continuous and uninterrupted brand history. Due to historical reasons, brand acquisitions and other reasons caused some breaks. Therefore cannot be a member of the ‘traditional watchmaking troika’.
Jaeger-LeCoultre also has a warm voice. Jaeger-LeCoultre has sufficient brand history, no breaks in the brand, and mastery of large complex functions. It is an indispensable brand for traditional Swiss watchmaking. Because Patek Philippe, Audemars Piguet and Vacheron Constantin have all used the movement provided by Jaeger-LeCoultre for a long time. The opinions of the opponents are concentrated on the fact that although Jaeger-LeCoultre has a long history and outstanding strength, Jaeger-LeCoultre has long appeared as a movement supplier in history. As the ‘engine’ of Swiss fine watchmaking, it lacks the identity of the watchmaker and therefore cannot be selected.
Lange and RICHARD MILLE are the hot brands today, especially Lange, which are considered the most important brands to enter the troika. In many people’s eyes, the only watch brand that can stand up to Patek Philippe is Lange. Some even hope that the three major brands of the Troika will be expanded into four major brands and Lange will be added to it. Opponents’ opinions are that Lange looks perfect, but modern Lange watches are emerging brands revived from the 1990s, and RICHARD MILLE is a new brand established after the 21st century. Therefore, it cannot be ranked in the top 3.
RICHARD MILLERM 56-02 Tourbillon Sapphire Case
As you can see, it is impossible to reach consensus on this matter. It’s up to you.
I must admit that I have not come up with answers to the three major brands in the watch industry. Let me choose, I can only choose two, Patek Philippe and Rolex. I have also been buying and implementing in accordance with my own standards. As for who should be the third brand, I have never reached a conclusion. The reason for choosing Patek Philippe and Rolex is because Patek Philippe and Rolex’s performance in the primary market and the secondary market makes people full of confidence. However, if different people stand in different positions, Patek Philippe and Rolex may be kicked out, so I’m really sorry, I can’t solve the problem myself, I can only throw it to players.
Who are the 3 major brands in your mind? please tell me.