Tudor Black Bay GMT: Review And Technical SpecsWritten by Alvin Wong
This affordable two-time zone watch deserves the hype.
We were not at all surprised by the love shown to the Tudor Black Bay GMT. As soon as visitors at Baselworld 2018 got wind of the watch, it quickly made many ‘best of fair’ lists, ranking high alongside many other multi-time zone contenders from illustrious brands like Patek Philippe and Rolex.
Being fans of bang-for-buck buys, our hearts were first captivated by the Black Bay GMT’s price tag. Starting from approximately S$4,900, the watch makes a solid case for Tudor’s mid-level luxury proposition, offering not just pedigree but also on-point design and technical excellence.
As a tool watch, the Black Bay GMT has to be the most useful and practical of the Black Bay line-up. While the chronographs and hugely popular dive watch-inspired models mostly play the part of accompaniment to smart-casual getups, the Black Bay GMT is something that you can actually put to work as a travel companion.
The movement that drives the watch is the automatic Calibre MT5652 with silicon balance spring, which is developed in-house by Tudor and is COSC-certified. The dual-time zone feature is easy to use – one adjusts the second hour hand (the red snowflake hand) in one-hour increments, which he sets to the 24-hour bi-directional bezel. It is a simple system that is a breeze to operate and use.
Black Bay watches are coveted for their nostalgia-evoking styles and the GMT version certainly doesn’t disappoint, sporting a blue-and-red ‘Pepsi’ bezel that we imagine pays homage to the first GMT-Master watch that Rolex introduced back in 1955 (the Rolex model has been given a new lease of life again this year, which you can read about here – but we digress). Elsewhere, hallmarks of the Black Bay design like the snowflake hands, large winding crown and distinctive dial interface are pleasing and familiar sights.
The 41mm steel case is a substantial presence on the wrist; justifiably so, given the two-time zone complication that it houses, and not so bulky as to feel imposing or uncomfortable. We’d opt for the version with riveted bracelet for its matching heft as well as a dressier disposition, although the versions with aged leather or fabric straps lend themselves really well to what Tudor calls the ‘neo-vintage’ style.
|Steel bracelet, brown leather strap, or black fabric strap|
|Hours, minutes, seconds, date, second-time zone|
Alvin promises not to be a douche when talking about watches. He may have scoured the Basel and Geneva watch fairs for the past 15 years, and played an instrumental role to the growth of Singapore's pioneering horological and men's lifestyle publications, but the intrepid scribe seeks to learn something new with each story he writes.