The winning timepieces of the 00/24 European Watch of the Year 2013 were revealed during an event, last week.
The contest, which first started in 2000, is judged by a jury of watch experts that includes jewellers, retailers, designers and dedicated watch collectors. The watches were nominated in June by manufacturers and importers.
A statement about this year’s awards said: "It’s fair to say there were several surprises and plenty of hearty, full-blooded discussions, as the jury weighted up factors as aesthetics, finishing, engineering, innovation, value-for-money of each watch and more."
The winning watches are:
Up to £2,500
Winner: Tudor Heritage Black Bay
Comment from organisers: "Tudor entered the competition with a dive watch that some have declared a retro-modern classic. For its finishing and design, Tudor won on points."
£2,500 to £10,000
Winner: Zenith Pilot Doublematic
Comment from organisers: "Zenith’s Doublematic took the judges by surprise. What in pictures may look over-complicated is – on the wrist – a satisfying, stimulating watch with 439 parts, assembled by two watchmakers who normally work in Zenith’s haute horlogerie department."
£10,000 to £25,000
Winner: Chopard L.U.C 8HF
Comment from organisers: "Chopard’s high-frequency piece, the first 8Hz chronometer, was a clear winner, being the equal of its peers for quality and beauty, but in a class apart for innovation."
£25,000 to £100,000
Winner: Breguet Classique Chronométrie 7727
Comment from organisers: "The really remarkable thing about the Chronométrie 7727 is the use of magnets inside the movement, as a way aiding the stability of the balance and therefore the performance of the movement. Breguet has innovated dramatically with this timepiece."
£100,000 and up
Winner: Jaeger-LeCoultre Duomètre à Sphérotourbillon
Comment from organisers: "Jaeger-LeCoultre’s latest take on the multi-axis tourbillon is a breathtaking piece of haute horlogerie that stunned and fascinated the jury."
Winner: Parmigiani Fleurier Tonda 1950 Set
Comment from organisers: "The introvert beauty of Parmigiani’s piece – a watch adaptable for dressy or every-day occasions – matched with its horological excellence including a free-sprung balance and micro-rotor, saw it declared the winner."
Comment from organisers: "This year the jury had the opportunity to give two special awards, one for Technical Innovation and the other for Watchmaking Artistry, if they so chose. In the end, while Jaeger-LeCoultre was awarded the prize in the blue ribbon category, the jury felt two other watches were strongly deserving of recognition."
Winner: TAG Heuer Carrera MikrotourbillonS
Comment from organisers: "The MikrotourbillonS contains two tourbillons, one for timekeeping and one for its high-frequency chronograph. The latter is the fastest tourbillon in the world, making a rotation every 5 seconds that ensures chronometer accuracy while the chronograph is running. A dizzying achievement for TAG Heuer’s technical team."
Arts & Crafts Award:
Winner: Laurent Ferrier Galet Classic Tourbillon Double Balance Spring
Comment from organisers: "The Galet Classic Tourbillon Double Balance Spring, with two balance springs and chronometer certification, is an achievement of meticulous classical skill and modern innovation."
Winner: Maurice Lacroix Pontos S
Comment from organisers: "Thousands of readers of our magazines and of the London business newspaper City A.M. voted online to decide which watch would win the Reader’s Award. Most of the votes went to the mid-class (category 2) Maurice Lacroix Pontos S. A chronograph with a striking NATO strap."
The 00/24 European Watch of the Year Awards 2013 gala took place on September 24 at the May Fair Hotel. To see photos of the winning watches, click here.