11 Watches That Changed the Industry Forever, According to the Watch Illuminati

Make no mistake, the Cartier Tank made rectangular watches a thing. The French jeweler’s been making them for more than a hundred years, with its curvilinear case shape and name coming from an unlikely inspiration: a WWI battlefield tank. Now, with skyrocketing prices for vintage together with all the celebrity love for the Tank, what’s not to like about the dress watch of dress watches? It’ll slip sublimely under a shirt or jacket while still offering massive presence when spotted. Put simply, the quartz version of the Tank is our one-for-all version of French chic and on a textured, grained leather strap, the 33.7mm of the Large Tank Must has never been more tempting. At cartier.com

TAG Heuer Formula 1

A TAG Formula One is still many folks’ first watch for plenty of—exquisitely Swiss—good reasons. In fact, it’s redefined what a top-tier yet casual sports watch could be for good. “Arguably the most known modern TAG (as the Carrera and Monaco were post pre-TAG Heuers), the F1 collection has been seen on the likes of everyone from Cameron Diaz to men in the Midwest,” says Owens. “What’s most groundbreaking about the F1 is its mass-market appeal and, most recently, thanks to Dimepiece, the cult following of the Original Formula 1s and all their colorways.” We’re all for a simple tool watch and would go for this steel monochrome vibe all day long. At goldsmiths.co.uk

Hublot Classic Fusion Original

A white gold watch on a rubber strap? Surely not. Before Hublot, it was unthinkable and subverted our horological ideas. Today, big hitters like Patek juxtapose haute horlogerie and supple rubber on its Aquanaut, while gem set Hublot Big Bangs are seen on footballers’ wrists. Nothing like this would ever have seen the light of day if not for Hublot producing the first watch to match precious metal with man-made softness in the form of the Classic Fusion—making it a true case for being one of the watches that changed the world. The latest 38mm yellow gold version flaunts its minimalist splendor like never before. At hublot.com

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