According to many of the "original" high-end watch dealers, the Rolex Daytona underwent a major transformation in the 1980's. Initially, it was a relatively undervalued, run-of-the-mill watch. Shortly thereafter, the Daytona became an incredibly sought-after wristwatch that commanded a premium over all other vintage sports chronographs; this change occurred seemingly overnight. This circumstance epitomizes a lesser-desirable watch suddenly becoming a highly-collectible, appreciable watch. Most recently, Universal Geneve, Longines and Omega have exhibited this distinction. My questions is, what watches (and brands) can be categorized as potentially promising investments as time progresses and our tastes evolve? Now before I jump to conclusions and address you with my usual "Rolex and Patek are blue-chip brands, don't buy anything else," let's delve into unchartered waters and explore some watches and brands that, although underrated today, will be treasured tomorrow.
Movado produces some of the highest-quality vintage chronographs, period. Price-wise, they aren't nearly as inexpensive as flea-market-watch-finds; yet relative to Longines' 13ZN, with virtually identical movements, dials, and cases, they (metaphorically) cost nothing.
I've also seen a handful of wonderful Movado dive watches. These do interest me, very much so. Although, I would say that the market for Movado dive watches has already been "spoken for," if you will, by multiple world-class dealers.
Breitling has tremendously depreciated in recent times. First of all, I couldn't care less about the Navitimer. There's not a single dealer I've met who's asking a reasonable sum for a Navitimer. In general, it's an overpriced watch! However, I'm extraordinarily fond of the Premiers, the Top Times, and other classic Breitling chronographs. And you can buy them on eBay for under $2,000. Need I say more?
Favre Leuba is just brilliant. I absolutely love that brand. Their watches are incredibly rugged, adventurous, and fairly attractive (in a tropical dive watch sense). There's nothing more a watch geek like me could ask for. Expect to pay up for vintage Favre Leuba dive watches. Keep in mind, the more colorful and complicated, the more costly. However, I believe the market for these watches will grow so much that you can't possibly overpay for one, such as the example above, as long as you don't exceed the $7,500 mark.
Again, a fabulous watch manufacture. I adore Eberhard's exceptional chronographs, but their Scafograf, in particular, I foresee to be the next "important" sports watch. Visually, the Scafograf is like the Omega 2913, also the Eterna-Matic. Frankly, I'd buy this Eberhard any day...that's if i could even get my hands on one!
Hey, don't forget about Rolex and Patek...LOL!