Top Bronze Watches of 2024: A Comprehensive Guide

Bronze watches have become popular for their vintage charm and distinctive style. Unlike the more common timepieces, they offer a warm, inviting hue that complements various styles.

One of their most fascinating aspects is the patina they develop over time. Exposure to elements like air and moisture catalyzes a natural oxidation process, allowing each piece to exhibit a one-of-a-kind appearance. 

Their craftsmanship varies, reflecting the material’s versatility. The range available caters to all tastes, ensuring that anyone can enjoy their distinctive look and feel.

This guide covers all you need to know about them so you can buy with confidence.

Why Choose Bronze

Bronze watches offer a distinguished choice for individuals who appreciate tradition and individuality in their timepieces. This material is a classic alloy, primarily comprising copper and tin, known for its strength and resistance to corrosion. In watchmaking, the specifics of the alloy include about 7.5-8% tin and approximately 0.30% phosphorus, resulting in an attractive reddish-brown, golden hue.

There are several good reasons you should choose a bronze timepiece:

  • Its patina: A distinctive feature of bronze is its ability to develop a patina over time. Unlike other materials that may degrade or wear down, the surface of a bronze watch interacts with the environment, oxidizing in a manner that produces a unique coloration and texture. This means that each bronze watch will evolve with its wearer, reflecting their lifestyle and the natural elements it has been exposed to. It’s a personalization process that continues throughout the watch’s lifespan, adding to its story and character.
  • Durability: Bronze’s robustness ensures it remains a lasting companion, capable of withstanding the demands of daily activities, including those that involve exposure to aquatic environments, given its excellent corrosion resistance.
  • Vintage appeal: bronze timepieces stand out for their retro charm. Bronze possesses a unique warmth that provides an antique aesthetic that contrasts with the contemporary design of modern watches, making the material a go-to choice for watch enthusiasts who have an affinity for both worlds.

Characteristic

Description

Color

Warm, reddish-brown, golden

Composition

Copper (around 92%), Tin (7.5-8%), Phosphorus (0.30%)

Durability

High, with excellent corrosion resistance

Unique Feature

Develops a patina over time

Top Bronze Watches of 2024

The following are our top picks of luxury bronze watches you should own in 2024:

1. ORIS Big Crown ProPilot – Bronze, Black Dial ref. 01 751 7761 3164-07 3 2003BRLC

ORIS Big Crown ProPilot ref. 01 751 7761 3164-07 3 2003BRLC
  • Retail Price: S$2,994
  • Private Market Price: S$2,023
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$2,250

They include a bezel with a coin edge pattern (resembling a jet’s engine), Arabic numeral hour markers, a date window at 3 o’clock, a strap with a bronze ‘Lift’ clasp, and a golden colored index and minute track on the outer dial.

  • Production Year: 2022
  • Case Size: 41mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Black, with black SuperLumiNova-coated hands and Arabic numeral hour markers
    • Bracelet: Green Ventile® strap with a bronze ‘Lift’ clasp
    • Bezel: Fixed, smooth, coin-edged, bronze
  • Function: Date, Hours, Minutes, Seconds
  • Mechanism: Swiss-made automatic Caliber 751 movement with 26 jewels, a 38-hour power reserve, and a 28,800vph frequency

According to WatchCharts, its average market price increased from S$2,008 on November 13, 2023, to S$2,023 on April 13, 2024.

About

The ORIS Big Crown is a luxury men’s everyday watch that marks a notable edition within the brand’s lineup of aviation-inspired timepieces. It showcases a bold design and modern, innovative technology combined with the traditional elements of a pilot’s piece.


2. Tudor Black Bay Bronze – Bronze, Slate-Gray Dial ref. M79250BA-0001

Tudor Black Bay Bronze ref. M79250BA-0001
  • Retail Price: S$6,091
  • Private Market Price: S$3,576
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$3,959

The main ones are Arabic numeral hour markers at 3,6 and 9 o’clock, a domed dial, angular ‘Snowflake’ hands, a unidirectional rotatable bezel, and a domed scratch-resistant sapphire crystal over the dial.

  • Production Year: 2019
  • Case Size: 43mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Slate-gray, with luminous ‘Snowflake’ hands and Arabic numeral/round hour markers and hands
    • Bracelet: Rounded black nubuck leather strap with bronze buckle
    • Bezel: Unidirectional rotatable, smooth, bronze, with a slate-gray aluminum ring with 60-minute graduations and luminous pip above 12 o’clock
  • Function: Hours, Minutes, Seconds
  • Mechanism: Self-winding mechanical Caliber MT5601 movement with 26 jewels, a 70-hour power reserve, and a 28,800vph frequency

According to WatchBase, its price has consistently increased between 2019 and 2024, starting at S$5,552 on March 20, 2019 and rising to S$5,697 on March 20, 2020, S$5,841 on January 1, 2022, S$6,349 on January 1, 2023, S$6,479 on September 1, 2023, and S$6,581 on January 1, 2024.

WatchCharts further indicates its average market price increased from S$3,560 on October 28, 2023, to S$3,576 on April 14, 2024.

About

The Black Bay Bronze is a luxury men’s dive watch that combines a historical aesthetic with modern horology. It adopts a classic design inspired by the brand’s heritage and Rolex Submariner watches of the 50s and 60s.


3. IWC Aquatimer ‘Expedition Charles Darwin’ – Bronze, Black Dial ref. IW379503

IWC Aquatimer ‘Expedition Charles Darwin’ ref. IW379503
  • Retail Price: S$15,098
  • Private Market Price: S$6,405
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$7,639

They include subdials at 12 (30-minute counter) and 6 (small seconds) o’clock, a unidirectional rotatable bezel with a SafeDive system, a caseback engraved with a portrait of Charles Darwin, a black bezel ring under the crystal, and black rubber-coated chronograph buttons and crown.

  • Production Year: 2014
  • Case Size: 44mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Black, with luminescent rimmed hands and hour markers. The lume is light bronze-colored and emits a bluish glow on the hour hand and hour markers and a greenish glow on the minute hand
    • Bracelet: Black rubber strap with an IWC-patented quick-change system and tang buckle clasp
    • Bezel: Unidirectional rotatable, with SafeDive system
  • Function: Chronograph, Date, Hours, Minutes, Seconds, Small Seconds
  • Mechanism: In-house automatic Caliber 89365 movement with 35 jewels, a 68-hour power reserve, and a 28,800vph frequency

WatchBase indicates its price has increased between 2014 and 2022 with it going for S$14,350 on October 7, 2014, and rising to S$15,220 from October 30, 2015, and July 10, 2017, and further to S$15,655 on April 15, 2022.

About

The IWC Aquatimer Expedition Charles Darwin is a special edition luxury men’s watch. It’s the first timepiece created from bronze by IWC and is inspired by Charles Darwin’s pioneering research and his exploration of the Galapagos Islands aboard HMS Beagle. It pays homage to Darwin’s groundbreaking work in natural selection.


4. TAG Heuer Autavia – Bronze, Khaki Smoked Dial ref. WBE5190.FC8268

TAG Heuer Autavia ref. WBE5190.FC8268
  • Retail Price: S$5,305
  • Private Market Price: S$2,926
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$3,407

The main ones are a bi-directional rotatable bezel with a ceramic insert, a date function at 6 o’clock, a titanium caseback with an engraved special Autavia decoration, Arabic numeral hour markers, and a flat sapphire crystal over the dial.

  • Production Year: 2020
  • Case Size: 42mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Khaki smoked with hands and Arabic numeral hour markers with ivory SuperLumiNova treatment
    • Bracelet: Black calfskin leather strap with a bronze pin buckle
    • Bezel: Bi-directional rotatable, bronze, with a black ceramic insert with 60-minute graduations
  • Function: Date, Hours, Minutes, Seconds
  • Mechanism: Automatic Caliber 5 movement with a 38-hour power reserve and 28,800vph frequency

As per WatchBase, its price increased between 2020 and 2022, beginning at S$5,073 on January 16, 2020, and rising to S$5,291 on June 19, 2020, and S$5,508 on October 1, 2022.

About

The TAG Heuer Autavia is a luxury everyday men’s watch crafted for longevity and style. It carries the legacy of the historical Autavia line, originally known for its aviation and automotive roots.

It boasts a khaki-smoked dial that presents a modern twist on a classic design, perfect for those who appreciate timeless aesthetics combined with contemporary materials.


5. Ulysse Nardin Marine Torpilleur Limited Edition – Bronze, Blue Dial ref. 1187-320LE

Ulysse Nardin Marine Torpilleur Limited Edition ref. 1187-320LE
  • Retail Price: S$12,513
  • Private Market Price: S$6,416
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$6,540

They include a small seconds subdial at 6 o’clock, a bezel ring with a coined edge, Arabic numeral hour markers, a stainless steel caseback with a torpedo ship stamp decoration, and bronze-toned leaf-shaped hands.

  • Production Year: 2018
  • Case Size: 44mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Blue, with bronze-toned leaf-shaped hands and white Arabic numeral hour markers
    • Bracelet: Blue calfskin leather strap
    • Bezel: Fixed, ultra-thin, coined-edge, bronze
  • Function: Hours, Minutes, Small Seconds
  • Mechanism: Automatic Caliber UN-118 movement with 50 jewels, a 60-hour power reserve (approximately), and a 28,800vph frequency

It’s a limited edition piece (to 300 pieces), raising its appeal among most watch collectors. Additionally, its price has increased by at least 15 percent between 2020 and March 2024.

About

The Marine Torpilleur is a limited-edition luxury men’s sports watch. It’s a testament to the brand’s legacy in precision watchmaking with a marine-inspired aesthetic. It mirrors the sophistication of classical marine chronometers in a modern wristwatch format.


6. Panerai Luminor Submersible Bronzo – Bronze, Brown Dial ref. PAM00968

Panerai Luminor Submersible Bronzo ref. PAM00968
  • Retail Price: S$23,939
  • Private Market Price: S$16,039
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$17,682

The main ones are a small seconds subdial at 9 o’clock, a unidirectional rotatable bronze bezel with a brown ceramic disc insert, a hypoallergenic titanium caseback with a see-through sapphire crystal, skeletonized sword-shaped hands, and a case with a crown-locking lever.

  • Production Year: 2019
  • Case Size: 47mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Brown, skeletonized sword-shaped hands and baton/round hour markers with honey-colored SuperLumiNova lume
    • Bracelet: Brown leather strap with beige stitching and a brushed trapezoidal titanium buckle
    • Bezel: Unidirectional rotatable, bronze, with a brown ceramic disc insert with a 60-minute graduated scale
  • Function: Date, Hours, Minutes, Small Seconds
  • Mechanism: Automatic Caliber P.9010 movement with 31 jewels, a 72-hour power reserve, and a 28,800vph frequency

It’s produced in limited 1,000 numbers yearly, increasing its demand among most watch collectors and enthusiasts.

Moreover, as per WatchBase, its price increased between 2019 and 2023, starting at S$23,192 on August 23, 2019, and rising to S$23,917 on May 26, 2021, and S$26,091 on March 2, 2023.

About

The Luminor Submersible ‘Bronzo’ is a serious luxury men’s dive watch. It maintains the 2019 Luminor Submersible collection’s design cues but presents them in an exciting new bronze case—the first watch Panerai offers in bronze—and a ceramic bezel. The brand’s bold material choice proves fitting for extreme underwater adventures.


7. Montblanc 1858 Limited Edition Chronograph – Bronze, Khaki-Green Dial ref. 119908

Montblanc 1858 Limited Edition Chronograph- Bronze ref. 119908
  • Retail Price: S$4,315
  • Private Market Price: S$3,115
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$3,972

Its features include bi-compax counters at 3 (30-minute totalizer) and 9 (seconds tracker) o’clock, slightly domed cathedral-shaped hands with a “cloisonné” design, a caseback embellished with the iconic Mont Blanc mountain alongside a compass and two crossed ice pick-axes, a railway minutes track around the dial’s outer rim and beige Arabic numeral hour markers.

  • Production Year: 2019
  • Case Size: 40mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Khaki-green, with luminescent slightly domed cathedral-shaped hands with a “cloisonné” design and beige SuperLumiNova-coated Arabic numeral hour markers
    • Bracelet: Woven khaki-green NATO strap with a tang buckle
    • Bezel: Fixed, smooth, bronze
  • Function: Chronograph, Hours, Minutes, Seconds, Small Seconds
  • Mechanism: Mechanical self-winding Caliber MB25.11 movement with 27 jewels, a 48-hour power reserve, and a 28,800vph frequency

It’s a limited-edition watch, raising its demand among most watch connoisseurs. Plus, its price has increased by at least 5% since its production.

About

The 1858 Limited Edition Chronograph is a luxury men’s timepiece. It draws inspiration from the spirit of mountain exploration and vintage timepieces of the 1930s. It’s renowned for its nostalgic design, high-quality craftsmanship, and comfortable wrist presence, making it the modern adventurer’s reliable everyday companion.


8. Longines Legend Diver – Bronze, Green Dial ref. L3.774.1.50.2

Longines Legend Diver ref. L3.774.1.50.2
  • Retail Price: S$4,897
  • Private Market Price: S$2,831
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$3,198

Key ones are a gradient green to black dial, a black bi-directional rotatable internal bezel under the crystal with a luminous triangle at the start position, a screwed crown with a checkered pattern at 2 o’clock for operating the bezel, a highly domed sapphire crystal over the dial, and a titanium caseback embossed with a diver symbol.

  • Production Year: 2020
  • Case Size: 42mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Gradient green to black, with pink gold-tone hands and beige Arabic numerals/indexes with squared blocks coated with Super-LumiNova®
    • Bracelet: Two strap options: A brown leather strap with beige stitching and an additional green NATO-type nylon strap with bronze tang buckles
    • Bezel: Black bi-directional rotatable internal, operated by a crown at 2 o’clock
  • Function: Hours, Minutes, Seconds
  • Mechanism: Self-winding Longines Caliber L888 movement with 21 jewels, a 72-hour power reserve, and a 25,200vph frequency

WatchBase indicates its price increased from S$4,059 on February 1, 2022, to S$4,783 on September 6, 2023. Furthermore, according to WatchCharts, its average market price increased from S$2,800 on October 18, 2023, to S$2,831 on April 14, 2024.

About

As its name hints, the Legend Diver is a luxury men’s dive watch. It’s part of the brand’s Heritage watch collection and offers a fresh take on the watch behind its inspiration- a 1960s diver’s piece with a compressor case. Aside from being unique for its bronze case, this bronze model is also special for breaking the date display monotony of previous 2012 tool watches.


9. Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special – Bronze, Black Dial ref. 29.2430.679/21.C753

Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special ref. 29.2430.679_21.C753
  • Retail Price: S$11,310
  • Private Market Price: S$6,314
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$7,066

They include a large onion crown, cathedral-style hands, Arabic numeral hour markers, a titanium caseback with an elaborate engraving, a white printed minute track around the dial, and an anti-reflective, scratch-resistant sapphire crystal over the dial.

  • Production Year: 2015
  • Case Size: 45mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Matte black, with luminescent cathedral-style hands and SuperLumiNova-coated Arabic numeral hour markers
    • Bracelet: Dark brown leather strap with a Zenith signed titanium pin buckle
    • Bezel: Fixed, smooth, bronze
  • Function: Hours, Minutes, Seconds
  • Mechanism: Automatic Caliber Elite 679 movement with 27 jewels, a 55-hour power reserve, and a 28,800vph frequency

According to WatchBase, its price increased from S$10,002 on February 1, 2020, to S$10,581 on March 1, 2020.

About

The Pilot Type 20 Extra Special is a true pilot’s watch that pays homage to Zenith’s rich aviation heritage by flaunting design codes of earlier models, such as a large crown, Arabic numerals, and uniquely styled hands. It achieves this while providing the latest technological advancements.


Summary

The following table highlights the bronze watches above, plus their key features, retail, private market, and pre-owned prices:

Model

Key Features

Retail Price

Private Market Price

Pre-Owned Price

ORIS Big Crown ProPilot ref. 01 751 7761 3164-07 3 2003BRLC

  • Bezel with a coin edge pattern (resembling a jet’s engine)
  • Arabic numeral hour markers
  • Date window at 3 o’clock

S$2,994

S$2,023

S$2,250

Tudor Black Bay Bronze ref. M79250BA-0001

  • Arabic numeral hour markers at 3,6 and 9 o’clock
  • Domed dial
  • Unidirectional rotatable bezel

S$6,091

S$3,576

S$3,959

IWC Aquatimer ‘Expedition Charles Darwin’ ref. IW379503

  • Subdials at 12 (30-minute counter) and 6 (small seconds) o’clock
  • Unidirectional rotatable bezel with a SafeDive system
  • Caseback engraved with a portrait of Charles Darwin,

S$15,098

S$6,405

S$7,639

TAG Heuer Autavia ref. WBE5190.FC8268

  • Bi-directional rotatable bezel with a ceramic insert
  • Date function at 6 o’clock
  • Titanium caseback with an engraved special Autavia decoration

S$5,305

S$2,926

S$3,407

Ulysse Nardin Marine Torpilleur Limited Edition ref. 1187-320LE

  • Small seconds subdial at 6 o’clock
  • Stainless steel caseback with a torpedo ship stamp decoration
  • Bronze-toned leaf-shaped hands

S$12,513

S$6,416

S$6,540

Panerai Luminor Submersible Bronzo ref. PAM00968

  • Unidirectional rotatable bezel with a brown ceramic disc insert
  • Hypoallergenic titanium caseback with a see-through sapphire crystal
  • Case with a crown-locking lever

S$23,939

S$16,039

S$17,682

Montblanc 1858 Limited Edition Chronograph ref. 119908

  • Bi-compax counters at 3 (30-minute totalizer) and 9 (seconds tracker) o’clock
  • Slightly domed cathedral-shaped hands with a “cloisonné” design
  • Caseback embellished with the iconic Mont Blanc mountain alongside a compass and two crossed ice pick-axes

S$4,315

S$3,115

S$3,972

Longines Legend Diver ref. L3.774.1.50.2

  • Gradient green to black dial
  • Black bi-directional rotatable internal bezel under the crystal with a luminous triangle at the start position
  • Titanium caseback embossed with a diver symbol

S$4,897

S$2,831

S$3,198

Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special ref. 29.2430.679/21.C753

  • Large onion crown
  • Cathedral-style hands
  • Arabic numeral hour markers

S$11,310

S$6,314

S$7,066

Caring for Your Bronze Watch

Caring for a bronze watch involves attention to its patina, regular cleaning, and appropriate storage. 

Tips for Maintaining the Bronze Patina

Here are some simple pointers you can use to maintain your bronze watch’s patina:

  • Avoid polishing: Polishing bronze can strip away the patina and alter its character.
  • Embrace natural exposure: Regular wear allows for even patina development.
  • Limit exposure to harsh elements: Saltwater and chemicals may accelerate patina unevenly.

Cleaning Recommendations

  • Use a soft cloth to wipe down the entire watch, including its full bronze bracelet if it has one.
  • For deeper cleaning, carefully use a soft toothbrush and soapy water, avoiding over-scrubbing.
  • Rinse with clean water and dry immediately as not all bronze watches handle water spots well.

Proper Storage

  • Store in a cool, dry place to prevent undue patina acceleration.
  • Keep the watch in a soft cloth or case to protect against scratches.
  • Ensure the storage environment is free from chemicals and humidity to maintain its appearance. This can also help if it has an aged leather strap.

FAQs

1. Are bronze watches any good?

Bronze watches are appreciated for their unique aesthetics and durability. Made mainly of copper and tin, bronze offers a warm, reddish-brown color that develops a distinctive patina over time, which is often sought after by watch enthusiasts.

2. Will bronze watches turn green?

Bronze watches may develop a greenish patina when exposed to certain elements, such as moisture and air. This effect is due to the copper content in the bronze alloy, which reacts with oxygen and other substances. One can maintain a bronze watch’s appearance through regular cleaning.

3. Do bronze watches age well?

Bronze watches are known to age gracefully. The patina that forms over time gives each watch a unique look—an attribute some collectors greatly value. For those who appreciate watches that tell a story through their changing appearance, bronze is an ideal choice.

4. Do bronze watches oxidize?

Yes, bronze watches oxidize due to their copper content’s reaction with oxygen. This process leads to the formation of the patina, which many wearers find appealing. The oxidation rate will vary depending on the environment and the specific alloy of the bronze.

Final Word

Embracing a bronze watch is about cherishing a blend of tradition, individuality, and craftsmanship. As trends come and go, bronze’s timeless appeal ensures that these watches remain not just time-telling devices but personal artifacts enriched by experience in the watch world.

Key Takeaways

  • Bronze watches have a distinct appeal due to the metal’s ability to develop a unique patina over time. This patina adds to the individuality of each timepiece, with the warm golden hue of the metal changing with exposure to the elements.
  • The market offers bronze watches at various price points, ensuring there’s a bronze watch to cater to different budgets and tastes, from the cheapest Oris Big Crown ProPilot to the most expensive Panerai Luminor Submersible ‘Bronzo’ pieces.
  • Despite its propensity to patinate, bronze is valued for its durability and corrosion resistance. Dive watches like the Luminor Submersible ‘Bronzo’ and Tudor Black Bay Bronze represent this well, designed to be versatile and resilient.

Looking to buy or sell your luxury watches? Watch Book is your one-stop destination for trading Rolex, Patek Philippe, Tissot, Sinn, Zenith, and other luxury timepieces. Find your next watch today or list your item for free!

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