Some hide it, some show it, but it’s a fact: many of the most famous brands have quartz timepieces in their collections. Even if the economics of this are understood in the low- to mid-range brands, it still seems like a paradox for the marques that do most of their business in five- and six-digit regions. In fact, many of luxury fake Patek Philippe ladies’ Twenty~4 models are also available in a quartz version, and today almost 50 percent of these models are powered by a quartz movement, a full three references of seven: Twenty-4, Aquanaut Luce, and Gondolo Serata. The manufacture, always a little reluctant to talk about quartz, tends to continue listing at least these three references in the catalogue.
Curious is also the fact that some of these brands clearly put their Twenty~4 quartz replica models on display while others practically hide them. One of the absolute institutions of our industry is a good example: Patek Philippe. This prestigious, multi-award-winning manufacture, a proud owner of some of the most technical patents in the watchmaking industry, still retains some quartz watches in its line. It currently even makes for more than 20 percent of the brand’s worldwide sales among new pieces. In absolutes, this represents 10,000 of the yearly production of 45,000 pieces.
When asked about this tricky position, first replies often sound like embarrassed justification, “We give the most attention to our automatic and manual movements, and clearly our male clients don’t want to hear about quartz.” However, the famous diamond-set Patek Philipe Twenty-4 copy model is Patek Philippe’s most high-profile quartz timepiece – and it remains in the collection.