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After Rolex, let’s move on to news by Tudor unveiled during this 2023 edition of Watches & Wonders. The direction taken by the little sister of the brand with the crown is surprising, not to say unexpected. While some of the new features make perfect sense, others don’t but are very sensible. And for having had all these watches in hand at the beginning of the week, we can confirm it!
Tudor Black Bay 54
This is Tudor’s flagship news. Knowing that the Fifty Eight had already done the work of slimming the Black Bay at all levels, nothing predicted the release of such a model. 1954 is the release date of the whole first diver’s watch signed Tudori.e. reference 7922.
This new Black Bay 54 is the most faithful interpretation. Its case measures 37mm wide, the original diameter, and its movement is now the caliber MT5400 (and not the MT5402 of the BB58). This one is not new, it was already used in the bronze, silver and yellow gold versions of the Black Bay.
The bezel does not have graduated markings, the “snowflake” needle is replaced by a “lollipop”Then bezel and crown have been redesigned to be more faithful to the original model. As much as the charm of the 58 had not operated on us, as much there, it is difficult not to crack! And that’s not counting the rubber strap which accommodates a real “T-Fit” clasp as an option… Finally!
Tudor Black Bay
Burgundy red is back in the Black Bay collection, but with little twists. The most obvious is the availability on a 5-link bracelet, a Jubilee but signed Tudor, which gives an undeniable charm to this piece. Its diameter is 41mm, with a little more finesse, and above all a caliber MT5602-U certified by METAS.
A more demanding chronometric certification than the COSC and which could well take precedence over all future releases of the brand. The Tudor T-Fit clasp also takes its rightful place, equipping each version of this new Black Bay, even for the version with a rubber strap. It only remains for us to know if we like this new bezel, with more pronounced notching like on the Pelagos 39, which contrasts with the rest.
Tudor Black Bay 31/36/39/41
Since the launch of Tudor’s in-house movements, we have been patiently waiting to see the Black Bay 36 evolve to finally take the plunge. The black dial disappears, as does the 3-link bracelet while the Manufactured calibers (MT5201, MT5400, MT5602 & MT5601) are finally arriving in all the cases in the collection. Too bad, we were almost there!
That being said, the arrival of the 5-link bracelet with T-Fit clasp brings a major asset to these Black Bay, not to mention the new sunburst gray dial with gilt finishes which is very successful. In short, fans of the DateJust look will be delighted, and that bodes well for the future!
Tudor Black Bay GMT
Here is another unexpected novelty. The Black Bay GMT is now adorned with a white dial contrasting black markings. This one is not just painted, but made in opaline, a pressed white glass that retains the light. A kind of tribute to the famous GMT Master “Albino” – a myth for some – produced by Rolex for Pan Am in the 1950s. A credible alternative that will delight fans of this horological unicorn!
It is a collection truly apart in the Tudor catalogue. Difficult to classify, and especially not addressed to watchmaking enthusiasts, it at least has the merit of displaying unique lines. On paper, it is true that it is an interesting watch. Always equipped with reworked ETA movementsthe Royal collection is adorned with new salmon and chocolate sunray dials to animate atypical tones in a beautiful way.