Longines is a respected watch brand with a long and colorful history. The name is often connected with luxurious timepieces, but is Longines actually a luxury watch brand?
Longines is no longer considered a luxury watch brand, as it started to use modified ETA movements instead of in-house movements. Longines does use high-quality and exotic materials that meet the luxury standards, but the use of an outsourced movement takes the luxury title away.
But does the exclusion of an in-house movement really mean that a Longines watch is not a luxury watch? In this article, we’ll explain exactly why the inclusion of an in-house movement is so important, and we’ll also highlight all other aspects that decide whether or not a watch is a luxury watch!
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Is Longines A Luxury Watch Brand?
Whether or not a watch is a luxury watch is, of course, fairly subjective. For some, it’s a luxury to even own a watch in the first place, while for others, a $2000 watch is just another for the collection.
But when it comes to luxury watches, there are a few guidelines set in place to determine their luxury status. These guidelines aren’t set in stone, as once again, luxury is quite subjective, but they do give a somewhat accurate representation of the brand.
We just touched on how the inclusion of an in-house movement is essential. But why is that?
Well, think of it this way. The movement is essentially the heart of the watch. If Longines does not make the movement (the heart) of your Longines watch, then is that even a Longines watch? Most would say; no.
Luxury watch brands spend loads of money and hours and hours on end to develop an in-house movement. It’s what sets them apart from the many brands that all use the same movement.
So when it comes to paying the hefty price, it feels justified. You know that every single aspect of the watch, including the heart, meets the company’s strict quality guidelines. You also know that every part of making and assembling the watch is controlled and supervised by the brand you buy from.
But if you’re paying a premium for a watch that ends up having the same movement as a $200 watch, it kind of stings.
It almost hurts not to classify Longines as a luxury watch, seeing that it has such a rich history of watchmaking.
Truth be told, the vast majority of people couldn’t care less if the movement was outsourced or not. But if we’re talking about watches with high price tags, these details matter.
The brand’s name also plays a significant role in the watch’s luxury status. Names like Rolex and Breitling are synonymous with luxury. The same goes for TAG Heuer and Hublot, but just as with Longines, the latter two don’t feature an in-house movement and aren’t ‘officially’ seen as luxury timepieces.
Still, the names TAG Heuer and Hublot are seen by most as luxury watch brands.
It’s the same for Longines. Even though Longines isn’t an official luxury watch brand because it lacks an in-house movement, the name itself is definitely seen as that of a luxury brand.
And that isn’t undeserving either. Longines has been around since 1832 and is one of, if not the oldest registered watch brands ever.
During all those years, Longines has never failed to provide its customers with high-end, high-quality, and innovative timepieces.
It’s only recently that Longines switched over to the outsourced ETA movements. And it’s easy to see why. Longines was acquired by The Swatch Group, and The Swatch Group owns ETA. So in a sense, you could say that Longines movements are still made in-house, but we beg to differ.
Materials & Manufacturing Process
If you’re paying a premium for a watch, the least you expect is that the watch is made of good quality materials. Imagine paying thousands of dollars just to receive a plastic watch.
It is expected that luxury watches incorporate rare and exotic materials in their designs. Think of gold, diamond, platinum, or titanium.
Of course, you won’t find all of these precious materials incorporated in all Longines watches, but they can all be found. Here’s a short list of such materials that Longines incorporates:
- 18 carats yellow gold
- 18 carats rose gold
- High-quality leather
- High-quality stainless steel
- Sapphire crystal glass face
Most of these materials speak for themselves, but I would like to touch on the sapphire crystal glass face.
As the name suggests, this is the piece of ‘glass’ that covers the watch’s face. A sapphire crystal is, by far, the best and most scratch-resistant option out there. We wrote an entire article on the different types of glass materials, but the just of it is this; sapphire crystal can only be scratched by diamonds.
You read that right; only a diamond will be able to leave a scratch on your watch’s face. All other materials (combined with a lot of force) would simply shatter before leaving any scratches.
Whether or not we like it, the price of a luxury product plays a big role in its luxury status. Yes, quality matters, but so does the price.
A high price tag creates a barrier to entry. Not everyone will be able to purchase the product, so the product is scarce. This is exactly what luxury brands are after, and it’s also what people that buy luxury products are after. They want a product that they know not everyone will be able to buy.
This scarcity is what gives the product, in our case, a watch, that luxury status.
If everyone’s able to buy a luxury product, it’s no longer unique. It takes away that luxurious and prestigious feel.
When it comes to Longines, they definitely price their watches in the ‘luxury spectrum’, although on the lower end. Prices start somewhere in the low four figures and can go as high as low-mid five figures.
Are Longines Watches Worth It
Longines offers fantastic value for your money. Despite lacking an in-house movement, a Longines watch is expertly crafted and the brand has more than a decade of innovation and experience behind it.
Whether or not a Longines watch is worth it is a fairly simple question. Speaking purely from a ‘value for your money’ standpoint, they most definitely are worth it.
But with any purchase, it mostly comes down to you. Really ask yourself. Do you think it’s worth paying up to several thousand dollars for a watch? And more importantly, are you able to spend that much money on a watch?
If you don’t think it’s worth it, or you don’t have the money for it, then a Longines most likely isn’t for you. But if you think it’s worth it, a Longines could be a fantastic purchase.
Longines doesn’t price their watches too absurdly high, so even though the watch is missing an in-house movement, it’s still worth the price. Retail prices start at around $1000 and can reach into the multiple thousands of dollars.
And by purchasing one, not only will you get a gorgeous timepiece, but you’ll also get one that will last you a lifetime. A Longines watch could be an amazing heirloom that you can pass down for generations.
And that alone makes a Longines watch worth it. You get a quality timepiece that will last you a lifetime.