Tudor Black Bay GMT Pepsi Review

The 2010s were truly Tudor’s decade — their comeback can be called the greatest revival of a watch brand in recent history. Tudor launched hit after hit, from 2010’s Heritage Chronograph, 2012’s Pelagos, to the Black Bay in the same year, and its subsequent models in the following years.

For these watches, the brand references a single watch or several watches from its past, and it’s a strategy that worked very well for them. Tudor doesn’t have much history when it comes to GMT watches despite being around when sibling brand Rolex launched the GMT-Master.

In 2018, they launched the Heritage Black Bay GMT — the first watch since the revival that did not pull a historical reference from the brand. Read on to learn more about the Tudor Black Bay GMT and why this watch was a major move for Tudor.

 

Tudor Heritage Black Bay GMT Pepsi: A Background

 

While the Black Bay GMT is part of the vintage Tudor-inspired Heritage Black Bay line, one doesn’t have to look far to know which watch it’s referencing. None other than the most famous GMT watch of all time – the GMT-Master “Pepsi” from sibling brand Rolex.

That said, it’s a rather new path for a Tudor: it preserves much of the appeal of the Heritage Black Bay while offering a true GMT functionality; and it also follows both the aesthetic and functionality of the Rolex GMT-Master.

 

Tudor Black Bay GMT
The Tudor Heritage Black Bay GMT “Pepsi”  with Rolex GMT-Master
and GMT-Master II Pepsi models

 

Since its inception in 1954 with the reference 6542, the GMT-Master has been equipped with a 24-hour bezel in a bi-colored blue-red scheme. The split-colored bezel of course, helps delineate night and day in the second time zone.

 

Features of the Tudor Black Bay GMT

 

THE BEZEL

The Black Bay GMT’s bezel comes in two colors: a more burgundy-like shade of red and a dark blue. Daylight hours are indicated on the red section, nighttime hours on blue. One can say that the bezel is closer in color to vintage models of the Rolex GMT-Master Pepsi.Unlike recent models of the GMT-Master Pepsi, there is no ceramic bezel here. It’s made of anonised aluminum, which some collectors actually prefer, as it will age with the watch over time; and even add character.

 

Tudor Black Bay GMT
Tudor Heritage Black Bay GMT “Pepsi”

 

THE DIAL

The matte dial provides the perfect contrast for its large, luminous markers and hands. In true Black Bay fashion, the hands have Snowflake tips, from the hour hands to the seconds and GMT-hands. The date is nicely integrated into the dial and is legible without needing a Cyclops.

 

Tudor Black Bay GMT and Tudor Black Bay
Tudor Black Bay GMT with fabric strap, Tudor Black Bay GMT with leather strap, and Tudor Heritage Black Bay 

 

THE BRACELET

The Tudor Black Bay GMT comes with three bracelet options: rivet-style stainless steel bracelet, black fabric strap with a red stripe, and the “Terra de Siena” brown leather strap.

THE MOVEMENT

Inside the Tudor Black Bay GMT is a new in-house movement created especially for the watch: the MT5652. This movement allows the watch to operate like a “true GMT”. That is, with a jumping local-hour hand, where you can jump the hour hand forward or backward and set your watch to the local time after crossing time zones. Meanwhile, the 24-hour hand remains linked to the home time zone.

The movement is also COSC-certified, comes equipped with a silicon balance spring, and offers 70 hours of power reserve.

 


 

It’s no surprise that the Tudor Black Bay GMT is one of the most popular watches in Tudor’s current catalogue. It has a superb build, stylish vintage-cool aesthetic, an in-house caliber, and of course, excellent pedigree. What more can you ask for?

 

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