Breitling has been producing seriously-made, aesthetically pleasing watches since 1884. The “Made by Breitling” label implies uncompromising testing, the finest materials and strict quality control. It stands for more than a century of expertise and timeless designs. So, when you buy a Breitling watch you are safe in the knowledge that you are getting a timepiece of exceptional quality.  However, when you buy a pre-owned Breitling watch, you will be paying considerably less for that same quality and if cared for correctly, it will retain it’s value too.

Below are 5 key things to consider when buying a pre-owned Breitling. 

1. Investment, Pleasure or Both?

If you’re buying purely for investment, then you don’t need to worry about the style of watch. Rather, you need to focus on whether a model is desirable now and whether it is likely to be so for the foreseeable future. So, my top three tips …

  • Always go for a watch with the widest appeal and the most limited supply.
  • If it’s purely for investment purposes, buy the very best example you can find. After all you don’t have to worry about damaging it if it’s only going to sit in your safe.
  • Make sure you buy a Full Set – box, papers, service records  and accessories. 

If buying for pleasure and or both pleasure and investment – keep reading 

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2. Style

Breitling know how to market to both the style-conscious and sporty audiences but not at the cost of substance. Their impressive history of partnerships makes them one of the most ‘stylish’ lifestyle watch brands in the world. The list of Breitling celebrity ambassadors includes the likes of Charlize Theron, Brad Pitt, Adam Driver and footballer Eerling Haaland. 

In 2017, Breitling reorganised their products into three focused main categories – air, land, and sea – designed to extend Breitling’s reach beyond the aviation crowd. Using those categories as a guide, seven distinct collections were born: Aviator 8, Navitimer and Avenger for ‘air’, Superocean Heritage and Superocean for ‘sea’, and Premier and Chronomat for ‘land’.


The most classic of all aeronautical inspired Breitlings is the Navitimer. The dial is complicated, the watch is extremely capable and contains mutiple functions that most people will never use. It’s classic Breitling styling as it’s best. 


The Breitling Chronomat is more traditional looking daily watch, that would look as good with a dinner jacket as with jeans and jumper. With multiple dial colour options, it’s a versatile choice. Plus you have the choice of either Chronograph or Standard options. 


This is perhaps the area where Breitling have truly surpassed themselves lately. The Supercocean range comes in a variety of case sizes, from 36mm to 46mm and some of the designs have become instant classics. For example, for a smart purposeful tool watch, the military inspired Superocean Automatic  is outstanding. 

3. Size

Does it matter when it comes to watches? 

It all comes down to confidence and perspective. Just because you’re small in stature, doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t carry off a larger timepiece. In fact, it’s very much the fashion for women in particular to wear oversized men’s watches. 

For a man, it’s all about confidence. If you feel comfortable going big and will wear a 46mm + proudly, then a Super Avenger  might suit you. If you’re going to be self conscious, then pick something classic like a Superocean. 

4. Vintage or Modern

pre-owned breitling

The choice between a vintage or modern watch is partly one of personal taste and partly one of robustness. We mentioned above about the fact that vintage watches tend to be smaller, so if you like a slightly smaller look, then something older might be for you. Such as classic Navitimer or a Top Time Chronograph. 

On the other hand, if you want to wear your Breitling every day, then you should probably go for a newer one as the movements from the 1960’s and 1970’s can be more fragile and expensive to repair than later versions.

Bracelets have also changed over the years and newer ones are more hard wearing and comfortable so may be more suited to regular as opposed to occasional wear. 

Servicing costs for a vintage watch can be higher and parts hard to come by – two important considerations when choosing between a modern and vintage pre-owned Breitling. 

5. Fashion or Function

What do you want your pre-owned Breitling for? Assuming of course you’re not circumavigating the world, is it simply to tell the time or do you need it to fly? 

If you want a pilots watch because you are a pilot, Navitimers are the best place to start. 

If you’re simply looking for a fantastic watch  made to the highest of standards, then you can have some fun choosing.

Visit our Collections Pages for our current pre-owned Breitling stock or get in touch if you need some more guidance.  

Ps. the above watch was our first ever Oakleigh sale and where it all began! If you want to find out more about our history visit our About Us page. 

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