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Rolex VS Cartier

Undecided on whether you should buy a Rolex or Cartier watch? Read this comparison.

A Comprehensive Comparison of Rolex VS Cartier Watches

Who Makes Better Watches
Rolex or Cartier?

Both of these watchmakers are recognized and well respected. So what makes these two brands different from one another? How does someone find out which is the best brand for them?

Luckily, the watch experts at Prestige Time are intimately familiar with both brands and can give you all the answers. This benchmark will compare Rolex VS Cartier to help you determine which is best for you.

Rolex Watches

Rolex is a brand that will definitely draw attention to your wrist all over the world. Rolex is the #1 most recognized Swiss watch brand with almost 100% international brand recognition and many horological innovations to call their own. If you're looking to start conversations with total strangers and have a watch that people recognize as a high-end watch, this brand may be perfect for you. Some people, on the other hand, are looking to make a more discreet statement and will opt for other high-end brands to avoid the extra attention.

Rolex or Cartier

Pros

Brand Recognition
A Rolex is the most recognized luxury watch in the world
Accuracy
Rolex watches go through very rigorous testing to provide above and beyond accuracy compared to most mechanical watches including the already highly respected COSC chronometers.
Resell Value
Rolexes have excellent resale values compared to Cartier watches.
Selection
Rolex has an incredibly large selection of watches that are in production and even more that are available on the open market.

Cons

Case Shapes
For the most part, every modern Rolex uses a round case shape. Any other shaped Rolex is very rare. Rolex used to make a few square shaped watches such as ref 4470 and many of the older Cellini models were in fact square or rectangular in shape. At this point, almost all the modern Rolex watches are mostly round, whereas Cartier has many case shapes from round and oval to cushion shaped,  tonneau, and of course, the many square-shaped or rectangular- shaped Tank watches
Price
An entry level Rolex has a list price of over twice the price of an entry level Cartier watch, making them more exclusive and less attainable to some.
Quartz Watches
Very rare to find any quartz powered Rolex watches (if that's what you're into). Most people buying a Rolex appreciate the mechanical brilliance of a watch and aren't looking for a battery powered Rolex but if you were, they would be hard to find as very few were ever made.   Cartier, on the other hand, has many.

Cartier Watches

Cartier was a world-renowned jeweler before being recognized as a major player in the watch industry. Their brand is listed as one of Forbes top brands worldwide and although Patek Philippe technically invented the wristwatch, Cartier, with their strong influence in fashion, made it mainstream. Since then the watchmaker has produced many popular collections such as their iconic tank series. Many consider Cartier as more of a fashion brand than a luxury watchmaker. However, Cartier has made moves to change their opinions with numerous horological innovations and iconic watches.

Cartier or Rolex

Pros

Case Sizes
Cartier watches come in many sizes from the very tiny 28mm for ladies to the oversized 44mm for men, Rolex, on the other hand, does have smaller watches but they start at a slightly larger size of about 31mm and go up to about 42mm. In the safe zone when it comes to size.
Case Shapes
As mentioned earlier, Cartier watches come in just about every available shape so in terms of variety, there is plenty of variations from which to choose
Price
Cartier watches are significantly more affordable when compared to Rolex. Although both brands have watches that have a list price below the $6,000 pricepoint, a Cartier can be bought at full MSRP for under $3,000 compared to the cheapest new Rolexes with $5,700 list prices
Quartz watches
Rolex doesn't produce Quartz watches anymore. Years ago they gave it a go and decided against it after most likely realizing it would hurt their brand. Quartz models are for those that don't care about the the esotericism and micromechanics of a complicated mechanical watch and prefer the highest accuracy possible. A quartz (battery powered) watch will be more accurate than a mechanical watch. Cartier produced many beautiful luxurious quartz watches as well as mechanical watches.

Cons

Brand Recognition
Basically, you'll get more comments and turn more heads with a Rolex. Rolexes have a distinct look. It's very easy to spot one whereas Cartier makes so many different styles, shapes, and sizes that it's often harder to recognize. Cartier is a very well-known brand but can't really compare with Rolex who is the world's most recognized luxury watch brand. A lot also has to do with their brand positioning and production figures vs huge demand
Accuracy
On the subject of accuracy, Cartier's mechanical watches don't have the same superior accuracy as Rolex. Rolex conducts very extensive testing on their watches and when they achieve the level of accuracy of +2/-2 seconds per day, they are given the designation Superlative Chronometer
Resell Value
Cartier watches don't hold their value as well as Rolex but they are not terrible when it comes to resale compared to some other high-end watch brands
Selection
While Cartier manufactures watches in all sorts of shapes sizes and colors, with diamonds, without diamonds, in 18kt Rose Gold, 18kt Yellow Gold, 18kt White gold, Stainless Steel, and more; they don't have nearly as many different models as Rolex. 

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