Mechanical watches keep the timeless tradition of horology design alive. Something is fascinating about mechanical watches that modern quartz watches do not have – centuries of tradition. The skills and expertise poured into the creation of a mechanical watch have gone through almost 600 years of development and evolution.
The sophisticated charm of mechanical watches is its main draw with timepiece enthusiasts. While quartz watches have overtaken the classic mechanical timepieces as the primary watch movement – one cannot deny the timeless appeal of a mechanical watch.
Mechanical watches are typically high-end and considered to be among the list of luxury watch types. This pushed the mechanical timepiece as a sort of status symbol in society and is most appreciated due to the level of craftsmanship and refinement that these timepieces exude. That is not to say that watch enthusiasts with a tight budget won’t be able to enjoy the perks of having a mechanical movement timepiece grace their wrist.
We have compiled a list of excellent mechanical movement watches that won’t burn a hole in your pocket. Check out our list of affordable mechanical watches down below!
Best Affordable Mechanical Watches
Seiko 5 Automatic SNK805
The Seiko 5 SNK805 Automatic Watch incorporates a military-inspired aesthetic. It features a green dial with green nylon straps. The stainless-steel case measures a sleek 37mm in diameter, which gives it a lighter weight – perfect for outdoor use. The Seiko 5 SNK805 also incorporates a Hardlex crystal for its dial window which gives it more than adequate protection.
The green dial is complemented by the white Arabic numeral markers and hands which are also coated with a luminous finish. Additionally, there is also a day and date display located over at the 3 o’clock position. The Seiko 5 SNK805 Automatic watch also has a 30-meter water-resistant making it able to withstand the occasional splash of water of brief immersions.
Timex Marlin Automatic TW2T22800
The slick and refined design of the Timex Marlin series, along with its mechanical movement, makes it one of the most elegant mid-range timepieces around. The two-tone black and gold aesthetics is eye-catching, to say the least. The TW2T22800 Marlin model also comes in several color variants with others featuring an all-stainless-steel build to enhance overall luxury further. Within the Timex Marlin lies an automatic mechanical21-jewel movement that also provides an impressive 40-hour power reserve.
The gold-tone stainless steel case measures 40mm in diameter. To further boost the luxury aesthetics, Timex used a domed acrylic crystal window. Other notable aspects about the Marlin Automatic include the date display located beside the 3 o’clock marker and decent 30-meter water resistance.
Invicta Pro Diver 8926OB
The Invicta Pro Diver 8926OB is one of the most affordable on this list, and it doesn’t even look its price. The beautiful round watch comes in at 40mm in diameter with its polished stainless-steel case with a mineral glass window. As this is a diving watch, it features a unidirectional bezel and a water resistance of up to 200-meters.
The Invicta Pro Diver also utilizes a transparent back case to give you a good view of its Japanese mechanical automatic movement. Another notable aspect is the date display which is placed underneath a magnified section of the dial window for better legibility.
Seiko Prospex SRP777 Diver Watch
This Seiko dive watch features a robust and rather bulky design. It has a hefty 45mm stainless steel case that also comes equipped with a unidirectional rotating bezel, as is the with most dive watches. The dial is reinforced with Hardlex crystal glass which is durable and scratch-resistant.
The Prospex SRP777 features a seal-tight screw-down crown that helps give it its 200-meter water resistance. The watch is also designed for comfort as it uses a flexible black silicone band. As for the dial, Seiko implemented a smart and simple design that focuses on legibility. The black dial features reflective and luminous silver-toned markers and hands, giving wearers excellent visibility even when underwater.
Orient Sun and Moon Version 2 Automatic Watch
The Orient Sun and Moon V2 might be one of the most visually striking mechanical watches on this list. It features a sun and moon display as well as a day and date sub-dial. The dial features a concentric pattern along with the guilloche finish, which gives the Orient Sun and Moon V2 a tinge of elegance.
This mechanical Orient timepiece also has a durable32.5mm stainless steel case build which also utilizes a sapphire crystal glass window. Also, the Orient Sun and Moon V2 have a 50-meter water resistance which means they can withstand quick immersions.
Hamilton Khaki Field Mechanical Watch (H69429931)
The Hamilton Khaki Field is a lightweight mechanical timepiece designed for use in the outdoors. The robust polished 38mm in diameter stainless-steel case features a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal glass window for added toughness. It also uses a green textile band to provide flexibility and comfort. The black dial features silver-toned luminous hands and Arabic numeral hour markers for easy legibility whether during the day or at night.
The Hamilton Khaki Field also has a 50-meter water resistance rating which allows it to withstand splashes and brief immersions in water. This is a pretty rudimentarily designed watch that appeals to the soul of an outdoor enthusiast.
Swatch BAU Automatic Watch (SUTW405)
The Swatch BAU Automatic watch features a fairly modern aesthetic with a pristine white silicone strap. The black dial is enhanced by the primary-colored red, blue, and yellow-tone hands, which is visually nice. The case measures in at a decent 42mm diameter and is also equipped with a push/pull crown. The watch also has a 50-meter water resistance rating which means it can only withstand the occasional splash of water. Swatch is always known for its casual timepieces, and if you liked their brand of style, this is a mechanical watch that is definitely worth a look.
Seiko PRESAGE Blue Gradation Cocktail Time “Blue Moon” (SRPB41J1)
The Seiko PRESAGE features a stunning and sophisticated aesthetic that gives it that unique luxury charm without having that high-end price tag. The Seiko PRESAGE is not just impressive in its design; it also has top-tier horological construction within. The dial features a sunburst pattern which definitely looks snazzy. The PRESAGE also employs Hardlex crystal for that added durability. Underneath the hood lies the Caliber 4R35 mechanical movement with 23 jewels.
It clocks in at 21,600 VPH and has a power reserve of up to 41 hours on a full charge. The Seiko PRESAGE exudes a level of complexity while keeping actual functionality as rudimentary as possible. Simply put, this is a mechanical watch designed to impress without taking a huge chunk out of the bank.
Vostok Amphibian Automatic Russian Military Wristwatch (710657)
If you are looking for a mechanical watch that excels in its durability, then Vostok is a good place to start your search. What’s more? This particular Vostok automatic/mechanical watch is also incredibly affordable. As you might expect from a timepiece designed by the official supplier of the Russian army, the Vostok Amphibian is as tough as they come. It incorporates the Vostok self-winding movement with 31 jewels for its analog dial display.
Once fully wound, the watch movement can run efficiently for 31 hours straight. As with all Vostok timepieces, the Amphibian model #710657 is also equipped with an anti-shock build. There is also a graduated rotating bezel on the robust case, and the watch itself provides an impressive 200-meter water resistance rating.
Orient Kanno Dive Watch (RA-AA0009L19A)
The Kanno dive watch is part of Orient’s flagship series. It is highly functional in regard to its marine capabilities as seen from its 200-meter water resistance rating. It features a polished 44mm stainless steel case that contains the Japanese-automatic movement. The case also features a 120-click unidirectional bezel and a mineral crystal glass window. This is a pretty impressive dive watch that is suitable for most recreational water activities.
However, I would refrain from using it during scuba diving expeditions as you need a dive watch with above 300-meter water resistance for those types of activities.
Tissot Swiss Automatic Watch (T1094071603100)
The Tissot Swiss Automatic Watch is a simple timepiece with a dash of class. It perfectly suits both casual and formal attires and certainly exudes that ‘executive’ vibe with minimal effort. The Tissot Swiss Automatic Watch comes with a 40mm stainless steel case. To enhance its mystique, this Tissot mechanical timepiece also incorporates a domed sapphire crystal glass window.
Not only is the dial window aesthetically pleasing with its domed shape, but it is also quite durable and has high scratch resistance as well. We also liked the simplicity of the dial display. The white backdrop supplements the sleek gray steel hands nicely while the polished hour markers complete its professional aesthetic.
Bulova Series 160 Mechanical Watch (97A109)
The Bulova Series 160 is a stunning timepiece that incorporates the classic mechanical movement with the visual flair of a skeleton or open-heart design. Traditionally designed timepieces benefit greatly from this visual design as we get a good view of the intricate inner workings of a classic mechanical movement.
The Bulova Series 160 features a 45mm rose-gold stainless steel case with a mineral crystal window. You will find the skeleton chronograph sub-dial on the lower left of the watch face. The Bulova Series 160 also sports a decent 30-meter water resistance which allows it to resist the occasional splashes of water. If you want a classy mechanical branded timepiece with a reasonable price tag, Bulova might be what you are looking for.
Seiko Divers Automatic Deep Blue Dial Watch (SKX009K1)
Featuring the classic Seiko Diver Watch aesthetic, the Seiko SKX009K1 is as timeless as they come in regards to watch design. This mechanical watch incorporates some nifty marine timepiece design to give it a boost in functionality. As this is a dive watch, it provides a solid 200-meters of water resistance.
It also features a unidirectional red and blue-tone Pepsi bezel. The case employs a durable and scratch-resistant Hardlex crystal window which is essential for outdoor timepieces. As for the dial, it uses a deep blue color tone which is accentuated by luminous hands and markers for optimum visibility.
MWC Military Diver Watch
The rugged charm of the MWC Military Diver hides a highly proficient mechanical timepiece. Underneath the sleek yet robust 15mm brushed PVD stainless steel case diameter is an automatic movement with 24 jewels and a hacking function. The black dial features bold, and Luminova coated hour markers and hands for optimum visibility in a low-light environment.
There is also a date display located beside the 3 o’clock position. It doesn’t stop there with its impressive build though as this military dive watch can withstand up to 300-meters of water resistance, making it suitable for swimming, snorkeling, and diving. If you want a highly functional and tough mechanical watch, check out the MWC Military Diver.
Fossil Grant Automatic Stainless-Steel Mechanical Watch
Let us cap this list off with another visually arresting timepiece in the form of the Fossil Grant Automatic Mechanical Watch. The case is made from stainless steel and measures 44mm in diameter. The case also uses a mineral crystal glass window to provide more than adequate protection as well as a decent level of scratch resistance. This timepiece features an automatic self-winding movement with an analog dial display. Over on the dial, we see that it incorporates a skeletal design which gives us an excellent view of the mechanism within. The dial uses Roman numeral hour markers and sword-like luminous hands. This is a fantastic-looking mechanical watch with a highly affordable price tag.