The watch collecting world has always had its favourites. The copy Audemars Piguet Royal Oak and the Patek Philippe Nautilus, for instance, have for some time been firmly established as the go-to for understated elegance – having a heritage and history that’s distinctive without being OTT. But lately, another classic that shares those pre-requisite qualities has majorly grown in popularity: the perfect replica Cartier Tank.
“People are beginning to recognise that these Cartier fake watches online have been thematic throughout the 20th century,” says Harry Fane, a London-based dealer who specialises in vintage 1:1 replica Cartier watches and jewellery. “They’ve been iconic, and they are fundamentally beautiful and elegant.”
The AAA quality fake Cartier Tank was first introduced in 1919, its sleek shape inspired by the physique of a WWI combat vehicle. It resonated with customers from day one – although it was made in extremely limited quantities for decades – but, until recently, the Tank hasn’t really been an “it” watch. Now, it’s becoming exactly that, with a newfound popularity also echoed by another classic top copy Cartier design, the Santos, which Louis Cartier, a grandson of the brand’s co-founder Louis-François Cartier, created in 1904 for his friend Alberto Santos-Dumont, an acclaimed pilot of the era.
As vintage and neo-vintage Cartier replica watches online have become more popular, their prices have been rising accordingly, especially at auction. Last year, a stainless-steel Tank from 1935 was sold by Sotheby’s for more than £200,000 [245,700 CHF]. A few months ago, Phillips sold a rare skeletonised 2014 for more than £60,000.
That surge in interest in high quality Cartier fake watches applies to less expensive previously-owned Cartier watches as well, which are arguably more aesthetically consistent with older versions than watches from other brands. On the resale website Watchfinder, for example, Cartier replica for sale now sits among its top five most searched-for brands, ahead of the likes of Patek Philippe. There, a simple stainless-steel Cartier Tank copy for sale starts at about £4000; prices for a Santos begin at around £6000.
Over time, the best copy Cartier Tank’s design has been tweaked in many ways: stretched out and narrowed on a Tank Américaine, accessorised with a metal strap on a Tank Française, solar powered and with vegan strap on the SolarBeat. Still, whatever version, a Tank is immediately recognisable. “Every iteration or variation revolves firmly around the iconicity of this unique watch,” says Franco Cologni, who’s written The Swiss movement replica Cartier Tank Watch (Flamarrion), an updated version of which is coming out in February. “More inclined to fashion, or more intended to resist the test of time, these variations – like in a cantata by Johann Sebastian Bach – reinforce the main theme.”
The Panthère, which was first introduced in 1983 and discontinued in 2004, was re-released in 2017 with minor changes. “We just re-engineered the bracelet to make it even more solid, even more fluid, with techniques we didn’t have at the beginning of the ’80s,” Rainero explains.
And then there’s the Crash, a quirky high end copy Cartier watch that was first introduced in 1967 by Cartier London, during a period in the late ’60s and early ’70s when the brand’s Bond Street location spearheaded watches of its own design instead of just simply carrying Paris-born creations. Cartier London’s watches are certainly different – in many cases, like the Crash, the designs look like classic timepieces re-interpreted by a Surrealist – but they are also, somehow, unmistakingly Cartier replica for sale.
“I don’t think it’s by chance that they were born there,” Rainero says. “They are born in a context that is very specific: there’s a specific attention to the elegance among men in Great Britain. Also, let’s not forget that period was a very specific period for the world in general but for London in particular.”
Prices of the Crash have been soaring recently. Earlier this year, one from 1967 sold at auction on the site Loupe This, for £1.32m [$1.65 million].
Swiss super clone Cartier recently dropped an updated take on another watch that was created by Cartier London, the Pebble. Originally introduced in 1972, the watch shares the Crash’s far-out vibe, with Roman numerals that look like they’re being viewed through a kaleidoscope. Issued in a limited edition of 150, the Pebble has been updated with a new movement – the Manufacture 430 MC mechanical movement, one of top quality replica Cartier Tank’s thinnest.