Hauger Grand Courage Automatic (Review) – Overpriced fashion watch or something legit?

Today we are looking at a strange watch from a company Hauger. By no means it is a strange watch in the looks department, but the thing that seems weird to me, is the overly big price! The price of this timepiece is 2890€ (which is roughly 3450$) and we here have a sample and I will investigate this while doing the review to see if the watch is really worth the price! So the brand is called Hauger and they are based Sweden! From the looks of the brand it has that fashion watch vibe with all those stories about the heritage and timeless craftsmanship.

They also say that they yearly make only 100 watches, I don’t know if it’s the capacity at which they work or just a marketing trick, but the problem here is that they make each model and colour in 100 watches a year, so in all together it isn’t really anything special to brag about as if we count it is close to 2000 watches a year. The second part that confuses me is that they say, they use parts from Switzerland, Italy and Japan. Well about Switzerland it is movements, the Italy is straps as they use Italian leather (although the leather may be dyed in Italy, it is a marketing trick as there is nothing special about Italian leather), but the other parts are made in Japan, atleast thats what I understand. Ok, that I can believe on paper and maybe it is true, but we will see how good the watch is made and even open it up to see if that is really an ETA 2824.

The watch arrived very well packaged and it came full of accessories, of course i don’t know if it comes like this when you buy it from them, but what I know is that the two leather straps they threw in for a test. The watch itself came in a very nicely made wooden box signed with Hauger logo on top. Inside the box you get a watch and cleaning cloth. Then you have an envelope that has warranty, instructions and congratulations letter. Then we have a leather pouch for the watch, which kind of doesn’t fit this watch as it doesn’t have the inner divider to put between the watch head and bracelet to not scratch the watch, but otherwise the leather pouch is pretty well made and is a nice addition when you want to take the watch to your vacation or something. Also we have leather key ring and in seperate two boxes we have the leather straps. The first impressions of the watch is that I picked up a 500-700€ watch and not 2890€ watch! The bracelet feels stiff and poorly machined and the finishing on the case.

The case of the Grand Courage is made of 316L stainless steel. The case is preyty well machines although there are problem spots like under the lugs it quite rough with uneaven surface. Also on each side there are two angles that don’t match and one is more distinctive and the other one is kind of like polished off or something. The consists of 3 parts (bezel, main case and caseback), but after testing it for water resistance, it actually fails it each time, I actually tested this with my watchmaker and when he opened the case, the gasket wasn’t placed right. The finishing on the watch is polished all over the case, the finishing is ok-ish, but if you look under loupe, it really doesn’t seem like a finishing on a watch that costs almost 3000€, I have had watches that cost 200€ and have the same or sometimes even better finishing. The case diameter is 40mm, the thickness is 11,8mm, from lug tip to lug tip it measures at 45,8mm and the width between lugs is 22mm. The size is quite good in my opinion, but it actually wears larger than 40mm, more like a 42mm watch. Also a strange thing is that they chose 22mm as it is quite large strap size for a 40mm watch and I think 20mm width would make more sense. At 3 o’clock we have a pretty big unsigned push-pull crown. The crown is made well and is easy to operate because of it’s large size. The crown action is also decent. The solid case back is held on with 6 small screws. On the caseback we have a Hauger logo in the center and specifications around the edge. On top of the watch we have a domed sapphire crystal with AR coating on the underside. The water resistance is 100m (10ATM), but as the gasket wasn’t applied right, I wouldn’t even wash hands with it on wrist or wear it in rain.

The dial I actually quite like. It is simple and very legible. The dial itself is matte white. The minute track is printed in black around the dial. The polished batton hour markers are applied. At 12 we have the Hauger logo with their slogan underneath it “Timeless Craftsmanship“. At 3 o’clock we have rectangular date window with a matching white date wheel. At 6 o’clock we have the watch name “Grand Courage, Automatic“. And at 6 o’clock right at the edge of the dial we have a “Swiss Movt.”. The polished hour and minute hands are applied with lume. The lume actually isn’t the best as it lasts about an hour. The seconds hand is also polished and is quite simple. Well what can I say about the dial, it is very simple, legible, the print work seems pretty good and crisp, but the dial lacks that “thing” that makes it different, unique! It just lacks personality in my opinion and seems a bit dull.

Powering the Hauger Grand Courage is a simple but great Swiss-made ETA 2824-2 automatic movement. It’s nothing special when it comes to horology, but it is a damn good and reliable movement and it’s the industry standart. This 4Hz (28,800 bph), 42-hour power reserve automatic movement is the one I expected in this price range so I’m perfectly happy with it. I have this movement in couple of my watches and can’t say anything bad, it really is a great movement! But what I can’t understand is why they went with the regular version at this price point, cause there are a lot of small brands with even in-house movements that are cheaper than this watch. And the second thins is that they aren’t even regulating them as my example is running at +18 to +20 seconds a day which is very bad as I have had Miyota movements in 10 times cheaper watches with much better accuracy! At this price you should get atleast an Ebalore version of the ETA, not the regular one and regulated much better! You just can’t put a good movement in a watch and upping the price to luxury watch price range and call it luxury!

Now we come to the worst part of the watch which really bugs me about Hauger actually scamming people. The bracelet looks really nice with all these small links and that polished top which looks kind of similar to the Breitling bracelets. But it has deeper problems like first I could mention a poor machining and design work. The first links after endlink cuts into the ends of the lugs and each time the bracelet moves, it scratches the lugs, it shouldn’t be that wide. Also some links bend nicely, but some are too tight and the bracelet isn’t really moving like it should. Also it is held together with push pins while most of watches that are better options uses screws. Yes, I know for example Patek is still using push-pins and some other brands too, but atleast those watches are better built in every other aspect! Also the butterfly clasp feels very cheap and I have had some moments where one side popped out, and I wear bracelet watches a bit loose. The straps, well, they are pretty cheap feeling and looking straps, the leather is nothing special and they honestly feel like something out of ebay for 3$. The straps are padded thus making them very stiff, I tested the watch and other watches on one of theyre straps for two weeks and it still was stiff after that time which has never happened to me, but I think that the problem here was the padding.

Overall the watch in my eyes is not worth more than 400-500euros, it clearly has a lot of issues and even if the issues were resolved with the case and bracelet, it still wouldn’t be worth as much as they are selling it for. In my opinion this is just trying to cash in on people who don’t know anything about watches and just look at the price and think it is something in the Rolex or Omega levels. I call this a fashion watch, but even fashion watches like Chanel or Dior atleast put the price up because of their brand name which is esatblished and known around world, but Hauger is just a company out of nowhere claiming these are the best watches out there. I also went so far to check if there has been any of them up for sale and I saw that 3 of Hauger watches were for sale on ebay and other platforms and they barely got 20% of the retail so that must say something. A good watch must keep it’s value or you should be able to atleast sell it for 60-70% of the retail, but we know that this won’t happen here. All in all I don’t suggest buying this piece, maybe used for a couple of hundred euros you should get it, but just to put that ETA movement in something else.

Price: 2890€ @ haugerwatches.com

MOVEMENT

  • Caliber: Swiss Made ETA2824
  • Functions: Hours, minutes, central sweeping seconds, date
  • Total Diameter: 11 1/2”’ (26mm)
  • Height: 4.6mm
  • Jewels: 25 Jewels
  • Power Reserve: 38 Hours
  • Beat Rate: 4Hz/28’800 vibrations per hour /Novodiac Shock Absorber
  • Accuracy: -12/+30 seconds per day

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS

  • Material: 316L Marine grade stainless steel or Diamond Like Carbon (DLC) coated
  • Diameter: 40mm without crown
  • Height: 11.6 with solid back
  • Length: 45.5mm lug to lug
  • Lug Width: 22mm
  • Finish: Polished
  • Water Resistance: 100m/330ft
  • Case Back: Solid steel screwed
  • Crystal: Domed, scratch-resistant sapphire crystal with anti-reflective treatment inside
  • Dial: Applied luminous indexes
  • Bezel: Polished
  • Hands: Sword hands with luminous
  • Crown: Polished
  • Bracelet: Stainless Steel with polished butterfly buckle
  • Watch Case: Delivered with a special customized wooden watch box

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