In 1977, Elvis Presley died and left behind a fortune estimated at $100 million. While much of that money was set aside for his family, some of it was put into trust funds for his children. One such fund held the proceeds from the sale of Elvis’ Cartier watch. In May of 2011, that trust fund sold the watch at auction for a record-breaking $1.8 million.
The watch, gold and diamond-encrusted Cartier Panthere was a gift from Elvis’ wife, Priscilla. He wore it often, and it became one of his most recognisable accessories. After his death, the watch was put up for auction by Sotheby’s but failed to sell. It wasn’t until 2011, when Bonhams auction house put the watch up for sale, that it finally found a buyer.
The identity of the buyer has not been made public, but we do know that they paid $1.8 million for the watch, making it the most expensive piece of Elvis memorabilia ever sold. The previous record was held by a pair of his used underwear, which sold for $100,000 in 2012.
But What About Elvis Presley’s Cartier Tank Cintrée? How Much Did That Watch Sell for?
Unfortunately, we don’t know for sure. The last time it was seen publicly was in an exhibit at the National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C. back in 2012. And while there have been rumours that it was sold privately since then, no one knows for sure who owns it or how much they paid for it.
So, while we may not know the current owner or the exact sale price, we do know that Elvis Presley’s Cartier Tank Cintrée is one of the most valuable watches in the world.
What Was the Most Expensive Watch Ever Sold at Auction?
This could be a difficult question to answer due to the number of variables that can affect a watch’s value, such as its age, condition, provenance, and more. However, we can take a look at some of the most expensive watches ever sold at auction to get an idea of which ones are worth the most money.
One of the most expensive watches ever sold at auction is the Patek Philippe Ref. 1518 in stainless steel. This watch was sold by Antiquorum in November 2016, for a whopping $11 million dollars. The Patek Philippe Ref. 1518 is significant because it is the first perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatch ever made in series production
Other pricey watches include the Rolex Daytona Ref. 6263 “Paul Newman” (sold for $17.8 million in October 2017), the Patek Philippe Ref. 2499 First Series (sold for $5.9 million in May 2008), and the Rolex Daytona Ref. 6239 “John Player Special” (sold for $4.6 million in December 2016).
As you can see, there are a number of watches that have sold for millions of dollars at auction. So if you’re thinking, ‘should I sell my Cartier?’ then perhaps this is the right time.