November 27, 2019

9 Best Affordable German Watches 2020 (Review)

Best Overall

Junkers 6892-5 Series Worldtimer

Best Design

Zeppelin Hindenburg 7060-1

Most Durable

German Military Titanium GPW Mission Chronograph GPWCHPU

Austin Tinimbang
November 27, 2019

German watches aren’t as well-known as their Swiss counterparts but deserve more attention for the engineering that goes into these timepieces. Germany’s engineering is famously considered the best in the world, and their watches are born of the same industrial brilliance. The Spring Bar has collated some of the best affordable German watches for 2020.

There are hundreds of high-quality German watch brands and each of them with numerous different models to choose from. Every timepiece has its own beauty and ingenuity invested in each of them. In order to pick only the best of the affordable German watches, our team at the Spring Bar narrowed the list down into the following key criteria: functionality, durability, design, and affordability.

Functionality and durability are the key factors one must consider with regard to the purpose of your German watch. Functionality is the factor that looks into the different parts of your watch and considers how it can be of use to you in daily life. Durability considers the materials used in making the exterior of your watch, specifically the crystal, the case, and the strap.

Design and affordability, meanwhile, are the key factors one must consider with regard to choosing a German watch fit for your personality, profession, and financial situation. Design includes the look or inspiration of your watch from other classic watches, and the material feel when you wear your watch. Affordability considers the price of the watch itself and whether or not it is efficient for the purpose and functions of the watch.

9 Best Affordable German Watches 2020

ProductsPricesKey Features
Gigandet Red Baron G8-004$127.73- Very affordable automatic
- Dressy Aviator watch
Braun BN0024BKBRG$94.99- Very affordable
- Less than $100
- Simple dress watch
- Low-cost sub-dial
- Lightweight
Zeppelin Hindenburg 7060-1$524.56- Superb design
- Classy dress watch
Gigandet Pro Diver G2-003$149.07- Affordable high-quality automatic Diver’s watch
- 300m WR
Junghans Form C Chronoscope Quartz 041/4771.00$361.00- Affordable sapphire crystal
- 4 complications
Zeppelin Chronograph and Alarm 76801$199.57- 5 complications
- Looks like a Breitling Navitimer
Roue 03F21MLA1WIB002152$235.00- Sports-racing watch
- Comes with 2 straps (silicone + leather)
- 4 complications
German Military Titanium GPW Mission Chronograph GPWCHPU$495.00- Sapphire crystal
- All-Titanium Body
- 4 Complications
Junkers 6892-5 Series Worldtimer$320.00- Sapphire crystal
- Extremely powerful complications (World Time and GMT)

1 Gigandet Red Baron G8-004

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First on our list is the vintage-looking aviator watch the Gigandet Red Baron. True to its name, it looks like a watch one would imagine the legendary German WWI Fighter Ace Manfred von Richtofen – The Red Baron – would wear. 

It is very simple and functional as a watch. Apart from telling the time, the only complication it has is a date function built on top of the trusty Miyota 8215 Automatic. While being an aviator watch, it can resist water up to 100M, meaning you can shower, swim and even snorkel while wearing it. Despite it being an aviator watch, the beautiful calf-skin leather makes it wearable even on more dressy occasions.

Apart from the calf-skin leather band, the design itself is highly similar to the IWC Pilot Spitfire. It screams elegance and simplicity while also looking ruggedly handsome on your wrist. The best part about this German watch is that it adds great character to your outfit while remaining affordable.

The Basics:

Brand: Gigandet
Model: Red Baron
Price: $127.73

Reference Number: G8-004
Diameter: 43.6mm
Case Material: Stainless steel
Crystal Material: Mineral
Water Resistance: 100m
Strap/Bracelet: Brown Calf-skin Leather

Watch Type: Dress watch
Similar to: IWC Pilot Spitfire Series

The Movement/Specifications:

Movement: Automatic Miyota 8215
Functions/Complications: Date
Diameter: 43.6mm
Thickness: 13mm
Weight: 87.6g

Key Features:

Brand: Gigandet
Model: Red Baron
Price: $127.73

Reference Number: G8-004
Diameter: 43.6mm
Case Material: Stainless steel
Crystal Material: Mineral
Water Resistance: 100m
Strap/Bracelet: Brown Calf-skin Leather

Watch Type: Dress watch
Similar to: IWC Pilot Spitfire Series

+PROS

  • High-quality while maintaining low cost
  • Affordable dressy aviator

-CONS

  • Limited functionality

2 Braun BN0024BKBRG

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Braun is a German brand that has been around for decades but is famous for other electronic products. What people don’t know about is that Braun products today are inspired by the design genius of the 50s & 60s Braun designer Dieter Rams. He is the genius who inspired the designers behind the minimalism of Apple computers. 

The next German watch on our list, simply called “Braun watch,” is something believed to be inspired by Rams as well. This is the most basic German watch we have on this list. It’s a quartz-powered timepiece with an analogue dial. It tells the time with a standard watch face, apart from the small second sub-dial. It has a basic black leather strap holding its 8.5mm thick case. 

At less than $100, the Braun watch doesn’t call much attention to itself. However, its meek elegance, minimalist design, and extremely light weight are perfect for those moments where all you really need is to look at the time.

The Basics:

Brand: Braun 
Price: $94.99 

Reference Number: BN0024WHBKG
Diameter: 38mm
Case Material: Stainless Steel
Crystal Material: Mineral
Water Resistance: 50m
Strap/Bracelet: Black Leather

Watch Type: Dress watch
Similar to: Nomos Tangente

The Movement/Specifications:

Movement Type: Japanese Analog-Quartz
Functions: Small Seconds
Diameter: 38mm
Thickness: 8.5mm
Weight: 30g

Key Features:

Brand: Braun 
Price: $94.99 

Reference Number: BN0024WHBKG
Diameter: 38mm
Case Material: Stainless Steel
Crystal Material: Mineral
Water Resistance: 50m
Strap/Bracelet: Black Leather

Watch Type: Dress watch
Similar to: Nomos Tangente

+PROS

  • Simple and affordable
  • Functional

-CONS

  • Few features
  • Basic functionality
  • Battery-powered

3 Zeppelin Hindenburg 7060-1

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From the simple Braun watch, we now move on to a more bombastic timepiece, the Zeppelin Hindenburg. The Zeppelin brand’s Hindenburg gets its name from the massive German zeppelin or airship – the Hindenburg. The Hindenburg was an elegant giant ill-fated in 1937 and called the Titanic of the sky. 

This watch pays homage to the Hindenburg with a design just as beautiful and its engineering no-less complex. The Hindenburg is a German watch built on a powerful Swiss Automatic movement. It includes a power reserve complication, a small second sub-dial, and a date function, all encased in a stainless steel case and a Hesalite glass crystal. 

Hesalite glass, although not as scratch resistant as mineral or sapphire, is a tough material more break-resistant and shock-resistant than either. It is a material popularized by Omega and used on some of their most famous watches.

Apart from the material strength and power of the Hindenburg, its design goes past many of the watches beyond its price point. The combination of large sub-dials and Breguet-style arms embraces classic dress watch design, which, although not as minimalist, is easy on the eyes while standing out wonderfully. It’s a perfect tuxedo watch.

The Basics:

Brand: Zeppelin
Model: LZ129 Hindenburg
Price: $524.56

Reference Number: 7060-1
Diameter: 40mm
Case Material: Stainless Steel
Crystal Material: Hesalite Glass
Water Resistance: 30m
Strap/Bracelet: Black Leather

Watch Type: Dress watch
Similar to: Breguet Classique

The Movement/Specifications:

Movement: Swiss Automatic
Functions/Complications: Power Reserve, Small Seconds, Date
Diameter: 40mm
Thickness: 12mm
Weight: 63.5g

Key Features:

Brand: Zeppelin
Model: LZ129 Hindenburg
Price: $524.56

Reference Number: 7060-1
Diameter: 40mm
Case Material: Stainless Steel
Crystal Material: Hesalite Glass
Water Resistance: 30m
Strap/Bracelet: Black Leather

Watch Type: Dress watch
Similar to: Breguet Classique

+PROS

  • Beautiful design

-CONS

  • On the pricier end of affordable German watches

4 Gigandet Pro Diver G2-003

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The ranks of diver watches have swelled these past few years at the advent of it being considered an all-purpose machine. Diver’s watches have become the “sneakers” of the watch world, and the German Gigandet Pro Diver does not lag behind. 

With its sleek all-black finish, Mercedes hands and white accents, along with its formidable 300m water resistance, the Gigandet Pro Diver works both for diving and for a shirt & tie situation. It uses a Japanese Seiko Automatic movement set upon a stainless steel case and band making it strong enough for other active pursuits. 

The overall look is inspired by the penultimate divers watch, the Rolex submariner, which makes it perfect even in office settings. Although heavier than most other dress watches, the 43mm width says the one who dons it is a strong and grounded fellow.

The Basics:

Brand: Gigandet
Model: Pro-Diver
Price: $149.07

Reference Number: G2-003
Diameter: 43mm
Case Material: Black Stainless Steel
Crystal Material: Mineral
Water Resistance: 300m
Strap/Bracelet: Black Stainless Steel

Watch Type: Diver’s Watch
Similar to: Rolex Submariner

The Movement/Specifications:

Movement: Japanese Seiko Automatic
Functions/Complications: Date, Rotating Bezel
Diameter: 43mm
Thickness: 15mm
Weight: 195g

Key Features:

Brand: Gigandet
Model: Pro-Diver
Price: $149.07

Reference Number: G2-003
Diameter: 43mm
Case Material: Black Stainless Steel
Crystal Material: Mineral
Water Resistance: 300m
Strap/Bracelet: Black Stainless Steel

Watch Type: Diver’s Watch
Similar to: Rolex Submariner

+PROS

  • High water resistance
  • Sleek all-black design

-CONS

  • Heavy on the wrist

5 Junghans Form C Chronoscope Quartz 041/4771.00

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The Junghans Form C Chronoscope is one of our favourite picks in terms of the overall design. It’s a handsomely sleek German watch with long tapering hands and sans serif fonts set on a plain white face within a stainless steel case. The fine black calf-skin leather also adds to the overall quality given to this piece by Junghans. 

It uses a quartz movement—which means batteries are required to operate—but it does so in order to power the multiple complications that give great functionality to this awesome watch. It has a date function, a small second sub-dial, a power reserve, and a chronoscope—a complication which allows for precise measurement of time elapsed. 

The Junghans Form Cs straight-forward aesthetic without sacrificing functionality makes this German watch a very appealing watch. It’s excellent for use in situations where one is required to look not only sharply dressed but also sharp-witted at the same time.

The Basics:

Brand: Junghans
Model: Junghans Form C Chronoscope Quartz
Price: $361.00

Reference Number: 41477100
Diameter: 40mm
Case Material: Stainless Steel
Crystal Material: Sapphire
Water Resistance: 50m
Strap/Bracelet: Black Calf-skin leather

Watch Type: Dress watch
Similar to: IWC Portuguese

The Movement/Specifications:

Movement: Japanese Quartz
Functions/Complications: Date, Power Reserve, Small Second, Chronoscope
Diameter: 40mm
Thickness: 11mm
Weight: 59g

Key Features:

Brand: Junghans
Model: Junghans Form C Chronoscope Quartz
Price: $361.00

Reference Number: 41477100
Diameter: 40mm
Case Material: Stainless Steel
Crystal Material: Sapphire
Water Resistance: 50m
Strap/Bracelet: Black Calf-skin leather

Watch Type: Dress watch
Similar to: IWC Portuguese

+PROS

  • Affordable for the quality
  • Lightweight
  • 4 complications

-CONS

  • Very low water resistance
  • Battery-powered

6 Zeppelin Chronograph and Alarm 76801

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Another beautifully designed watch by Zeppelin, the Zeppelin Chronograph and Alarm is a German watch that excellently combines both form and function. The beautiful dial, with its three subdials surrounded by a Tachymeter, is reminiscent of the fundamental aviator: the Breitling Navitimer. 

The subdials are composed of multiple small seconds of different measures 1/1 and 1/10, and an alarm function. The alarm function is an interesting addition as this function is rarely found on analogue watches, even on analogue-quartz watches.

To make the watch affordable, the multiple complications are powered by a Japanese quartz movement. This movement also allows the watch to have a comparably lighter weight than most of its class, making it sit lightly on the wrist while allowing it to be just as functional as more expensive mechanical timepieces.

Much like its Breitling counterpart in higher horology, this German watch belongs on the wrist of the optimistic executive; it is built with every bit of class and purpose as necessary without breaking one’s bank.

The Basics:

Brand: Zeppelin
Model: Chronograph and Alarm
Price: $199.57

Reference Number: 76801
Diameter: 42mm
Case Material: Stainless Steel
Crystal Material: Mineral
Water Resistance: 50m
Strap/Bracelet: Brown Leather

Watch Type: Aviator Watch
Similar to: Breitling Navitimer

The Movement/Specifications:

Movement: Japanese Quartz
Functions/Complications: Date, Power Reserve, Small Seconds, Alarm, Chronograph
Diameter: 42mm
Thickness: 13mm
Weight: 280g

Key Features:

Brand: Zeppelin
Model: Chronograph and Alarm
Price: $199.57

Reference Number: 76801
Diameter: 42mm
Case Material: Stainless Steel
Crystal Material: Mineral
Water Resistance: 50m
Strap/Bracelet: Brown Leather

Watch Type: Aviator Watch
Similar to: Breitling Navitimer

+PROS

  • Very cost-effective

-CONS

  • Battery-powered

7 Roue CHR One

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From the relatively new watch company Roue comes this interesting German sports-racing watch, the CHR One. Roue, being a newcomer, readily jumped into the vintage-aesthetic-loving niche and delivered us this 60s throwback sports-racer. 

Although the tonneau (barrel) shape and the shape of the watch face itself is similar to some versions of the Seiko Sports 5 Turtle, the matte color and the racing design reminds us of the Heuer Monaco and its fashionable use by drivers of 60s open-top race cars. 

The CHR One is built on a Japanese quartz movement encased in wear-resistant black PVD-stainless steel. It comes with both a Silicone and Leather strap. Staying true to its racing aesthetic and functionality, it has a chronograph and two sub-dials for measuring 1/10 and 1/20 seconds for precisely measuring track time. 

The Basics:

Brand: Roue
Price: $235.00

Reference Number: CHR One
Diameter: 41.5mm
Case Material: Black PVD – Stainless Steel
Crystal Material: Sapphire
Water Resistance: 50m
Strap/Bracelet: Silicone and Leather

Watch Type: Sports Racing
Similar to: Seiko Sports 5 Turtle

The Movement/Specifications:

Movement: Japanese Quartz
Functions/Complications: Date, 1/10 second, 1/20 second, Chronograph
Diameter: 41.5mm
Thickness: 10.9mm

Key Features:

Brand: Roue
Price: $235.00

Reference Number: CHR One
Diameter: 41.5mm
Case Material: Black PVD – Stainless Steel
Crystal Material: Sapphire
Water Resistance: 50m
Strap/Bracelet: Silicone and Leather

Watch Type: Sports Racing
Similar to: Seiko Sports 5 Turtle

+PROS

  • Complications perfect for sports racing
  • 2 different straps available for free
  • Tonneau shape

-CONS

  • Battery-powered
  • Made by new company

8 German Military Titanium GPW Mission Chronograph GPWCHPU

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Our next watch, the German Military Titanium GPW Mission Chronograph is a quintessential military field watch in every sense of the word: it’s tough, it’s light, and packs all the features any military man or ordinary civilian fighting day-to-day would be happy to have. 

This German Military GPW is the toughest German watch we can find; the swiss quartz movement is built upon an all-titanium case with a sapphire crystal. Titanium—apart from its well-known toughness—is also a very lightweight material allowing you to get from place to place and objective to objective barely feeling the watch weighing on your wrist.

Don’t perceive this lightweight German watch a lightweight when it comes to features. On the contrary, its functionality is arguably one of the best among the many other analogue watches. It has 7 different chronograph functions, apart from its date and small seconds sub-dial, making it unbelievably precise when it comes to measuring elapsed time.

The Basics:

Brand: German Military GPW
Model: Mission Chronograph
Price: $495.00

Reference Number:  GPWCHPU
Diameter: 42mm
Case Material: Titanium
Crystal Material: Sapphire
Water Resistance: 100m
Strap/Bracelet: Rubber

Watch Type: Field watch
Similar to: Rolex Daytona

The Movement/Specifications:

Movement: Swiss Quartz
Functions/Complications: Center stop second (1/1 sec), 1/10 second, 1/10 seconds up to 30 minutes, 30 minute counter; 10 hour counter, ADD and SPLIT functions; Big date; Small seconds
Diameter: 42mm
Thickness: 13mm
Weight: 57g

Key Features:

Brand: German Military GPW
Model: Mission Chronograph
Price: $495.00

Reference Number:  GPWCHPU
Diameter: 42mm
Case Material: Titanium
Crystal Material: Sapphire
Water Resistance: 100m
Strap/Bracelet: Rubber

Watch Type: Field watch
Similar to: Rolex Daytona

+PROS

  • Multiple timer complications
  • Extremely durable

-CONS

  • On the pricier-end of affordable German watches
  • Battery-powered

9 Junkers 6892-5 Series Worldtimer

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The Junkers watch brand pays homage to the famed WWII wonders of German engineering, the Junkers aircraft. True to the name which they are inspired by, Junkers produces only high-quality vintage aesthetic aviator watches. One of the finest examples of this is the Junkers Worldtimer.

Its Japanese quartz movement powers some of the rarest complications our team can find for German analogue watches: the World Timer and the GMT. These functions would allow you to monitor times across the world directly on your wrist. 

Its sleek design and outstanding functionalities make it perfect for aspiring pilots and jet setters. It’s wonderful black and white colorway make it look like a Rolex Cosmograph Daytona, making it a perfect affordable companion when travelling the world.

The Basics:

Brand: Junkers
Model: Worldtimer
Price: $320.00

Reference Number:  6892-5
Diameter: 42mm
Case Material: Stainless steel
Crystal Material: Mineral
Water Resistance: 100m
Strap/Bracelet: Black leather

Watch Type: Aviator watch
Similar to: Rolex Cosmograph Daytona

The Movement/Specifications:

Movement: Japanese Quartz
Functions/Complications: Chronograph, World Timer, sub-dial GMT
Diameter: 42mm
Thickness: 12mm
Weight: 60.1g

Key Features:

Brand: Junkers
Model: Worldtimer
Price: $320.00

Reference Number:  6892-5
Diameter: 42mm
Case Material: Stainless steel
Crystal Material: Mineral
Water Resistance: 100m
Strap/Bracelet: Black leather

Watch Type: Aviator watch
Similar to: Rolex Cosmograph Daytona

+PROS

  • Powerful and rare complications at price-point
  • High water resistance

-CONS

  • Battery-powered
  • On the pricier-end of affordable German watches

Best Affordable German Watches Buyer’s Guide and FAQs

Key Features to Consider In Buying an Affordable German Watch

In this guide, we compared the best options that fall under German watch in terms of functionality, durability, design, and affordability.

  • Functionality includes the following: (a) complications or what functions your watch should have apart from telling the time, (b) movement or how your watch is powered, (c) water resistance or the depth of water or water pressure your watch can survive, and (d) type of watch or what purposes your watch is designed for. 
  • Durability is a factor that primarily focuses on three things: (a) the glass or crystal, (b) the material of the watch case, and (c) the strap, bracelet, or band.

The crystal is the part of the watch that protects the dial. When we consider crystals we consider the scratch-resistance or toughness of the material. The watch case is very important since it is the part that houses the movement of the watch and protects the mechanical and electronic parts of the watch from the elements.  The strap is the part of the watch that holds the watch on the wrist. It is mostly considered for the design of the watch, but for more active purpose watches, the material is as important for us to look into as the watch case.

  • Design includes: (a) the look or inspiration of your watch from other classic watches, and (b) the material feel when you wear your watch. 

The art that we enjoy on a daily basis is usually inspired by art that came before it. Apart from the overall look of the watch we also considered the inspiration for the watches on the list. We believe that knowing the inspiration is important in determining which watch is best fitting for occasions or personalities.

  • Affordability is one of the most important considerations for the watches on this list as it limits the scope of our search for the finest German watches and allows us to pick for you watches with the most value-for-money. Without considering affordability we will be having high-powered or intricately designed watches more powerful or elegant than what we have on the list but could only be availed by a limited number of people. We decided to limit our watches to below $1000.

Why should I try German watches?

Swiss watchmakers are known to be the best in the world, and we would be hard-pressed to dispute that. Despite this, German watches are still a recommended buy because of the sheer skill input by its makers. Despite not having the renown enjoyed by their Swiss counterparts, German watchmakers can be just as efficient and precise. 

A lot of German watchmakers learn Swiss techniques directly from Switzerland, which is just a border away, or from Swiss-trained masters. Being less known for their skills also mean much lower prices for their timepieces for near-equal quality.

Why do German watches contain Swiss or Japanese movements or parts?

To be classified as German-made, Swiss-made, or Japanese-made, a watch must be composed of a certain percentage of parts from the country it claims to be made. For example, our two picks from Zeppelin use different movements: the Zeppelin Hindenburg uses a Swiss Automatic movement while the Zeppelin Chronograph Alarm uses a Japanese quartz movement. What makes both of them German watches is that most of the other parts that make up these watches are German despite the foreign movements. Watchmakers import parts from outside their home countries in order to decrease manufacturing costs or to provide for their watches parts that fit its purpose best.