The watch enthusiasts among you readers probably remember Favre-Leuba for making mediocre watches during the 1990s. However, what I didn’t know, is that Favre-Leuba is actually quite old (1718). This brand from the 18th century is based in Basel, the city that we all know for the annual BaselWorld show. Fast forward to 1966 (a nice overview of Favre-Leuba’s history can be read here), when Favre-Leuba introduced the first Bathy diving watch. This watch featured a mechanical depth gauge, graduated in metres (50m) as well as feet (160ft) and had a screw-down type of crown, to secure the watch against water.

The picture above shows the original Bathy, dated 1966, with a water resistancy of 50 meters. I found this photo on a most interesting (French) website about the history of diving watches, make sure to pay them a visit: http://lesmala.net/plongee/histoiremontre.htm.

As you might have guessed, Favre-Leuba is back! The Bathy got a worthy successor in 2008, the Bathy V.2. The Bathy V.2 is a 46mm diving watch, with a depth gauge (45 m / 150 ft) and water resistant to 300 m.

In 2009, Favre-Leuba introduced the Bathy Chronograph Triple Time Zone. Based on the described Bathy V.2., but with a chronograph movement and able to display 3 different time zones. The depth gauge feature is not available for this model, too bad you might think, but I can’t think of a way to include this on a watch with chronograph and GMT functionality. It would do quite some harm to the readability of the watch. The watch case is made out of titanium grade 2 and measures 46mm (diameter) and has a height of 18mm.

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Considering the fact that Favre-Leuba wants to position itself amongst the serious (diving) watches, keep an eye on the vintage (Bathy) timepieces of this brand. You can find more about Favre-Leuba watches on the Favre-Leuba forum over at WatchUseek.com.

The price of this watch in The Netherlands starts at 11.500 Euro.

Robert-Jan Broer
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Robert-Jan Broer

Founder & Editor at Fratello Watches
Robert-Jan Broer, born in 1977, watch collector and author on watches for over a decade. Founder of Fratello Watches in 2004.
Robert-Jan Broer
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  • Love the remake of the Favre-Leuba brand. Visited their hotel room during SIHH and was VERY impressed. Unique look/complications/movements…and pricy.

  • Hi Kristian,

    Pricy indeed, especially during times like these, I wonder if people want to spend so much money on a brand that’s hardly known. I wouldn’t care that much, but the general public.. I don’t know. However, the new Bathy models are quite impressive. Haven’t seen them in the flesh yet, but I trust your verdict 🙂

    RJ

  • @RJ: The comfort is incredible, they wear VERY ell on the wrist.

  • Dr. Bryan G Howard

    I have collected the Favre Leuba, models made from the 50’s and 60’s. All have been back to factory for full restoration. What a wonderful job they do. I collect just about every quality watch I can get my hands on and I will put these 50’s and 60’s models up against my Omega’s, Rolexes, etc. They are a very fine watch and through the two decades that I collect, they look exactly like the rolex Precision. The movements are beyond reproach. The size of 34mm diameter and 40mm lug to lug is a bit small for today bnut in my practice, when wearing one I generally always get comments, especially the Sea Kings and Sea Chiefs. Most, that resemble the Rolex Precision simply just have name at top and 17 jewlels and Swiss Made at very bottom, the same is true of the Rolex of that era, except for the model name Precision. Great watch have been around for almost 300 years. try to say that about any type of product, not just the watch industry.

    • Ray Stone

      I have a Favre-Leuba and would like more info about the watch..cant seem to find anything about it in the net. can you help me..I have been told that it may be quiet valuable..thanks

  • James Walley

    When I was a kid living in Geneva (1965-66 or so), I picked a Favre-Leuba over a Tudor as my first “good” watch. (Looking at the prices today, I have to shake my head in wonder, although I assume the one I got wasn’t exactly the top of the product line…) I remember, for the afternoon I got it, staring transfixed as it counted the seconds.

    Sadly, a few years later, after we had moved back to the U.S., that watch was stolen one summer day at a country-club where some friends had invited me (must have been some upper-crust thieves). Since then, I’ve never seen another Favre-Leuba…and, nowadays, find myself more in the Timex/Pulsar price range. I doubt that circumstances will ever allow me to purchase one of their new models at that price! 🙁

    • Danne

      Cheer up! You can get really nice refurbished watches Favre Leuba from the sixties for not very much money, maybe 30 dollar for a SEA KING or 60 dollar for a TWIN POWER. Refurbished by Indian watchmakers. Nothing funny, just cheap labor.

  • Darby

    Is this a good price for this watch? I’m thinking of buying it. http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=221494030490