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Seiko Launch Prospex Speedtimer ‘Panda’ 1972 Chronograph Re-Interpretation for 100th Anniversary

Seiko Prospex Speedtimer Panda 1972 Chronograph Re-interpretation

Seiko are continuing their exploration of significant Speedtimer models from bygone years with another stylish re-interpretation. The first of these re-interpretations came in early 2022 with the 1964 edition followed later in the year with the 1969 version. Now, they’ve jumped forward to 1972 for the Prospex Speedtimer ‘Panda’ 1972 Chronograph Re-Interpretation, available in both a standard and 100th Anniversary limited edition.

You can immediately tell that it has a much more modern and sporty design with broader, facetted lugs that follow the curve of the case compared to the straighter lugs of the 60s inspired pieces. The case itself measures 42mm in diameter in stainless steel with Seiko’s super hard coating providing improved scratch resistance. The case is the same for both the regular and limited editions, with the main difference between the two being the dials.

Seiko Prospex Speedtimer Panda 1972 Chronograph Re-interpretation SRQ047J1

And when it comes to the dials, the difference is that the standard version is a regular panda display while the limited edition is a reverse panda. The term panda refers to a white dial with black subdials, creating a pattern similar to the markings on a panda bear’s face. Intuitively a reverse panda display is the opposite, with a black dial and white subdials. It’s a colourway that was popularised in the late 60s, early 70s by watches like the Paul Newman Daytona, so it’s use for the 1972 re-interpretation is appropriate.

Seiko Prospex Speedtimer Panda 1972 Chronograph Re-interpretation SRQ049J1

Diving into the display a bit deeper, both follow a tricompax layout with a 30-minute timer at 9 o’clock, 12-hour timer at 6 and a small seconds subdial at 3. There’s also a date window between 4 and 5 o’clock, then around the central disc of the dial is a 60-minute scale and peripheral tachymeter for calculating speed. To be honest, they’re both extremely conventional chronographs. Proof that sometimes classic designs are best because they are both very nice watches.

Seiko Prospex Speedtimer Panda 1972 Chronograph Re-interpretation SRQ047J1

Beneath the surface, both versions of the Prospex Speedtimer ‘Panda’ 1972 Chronograph Re-Interpretation house the 8R48 automatic chronograph movement. It features a 45-hour power reserve and has an accuracy of -15/+25 seconds per day, it one of Seiko’s newer movements replacing the 8R46 used in the previous Speedtimers. The main update to the calibre is that it’s more compact, allowing the new watches to have slightly slimmer cases with a thickness of 14.6mm compared to 15.1mm, a small but notable improvement.

Seiko Prospex Speedtimer Panda 1972 Chronograph Re-interpretation SRQ047J1
Seiko Prospex Speedtimer Panda 1972 Chronograph Re-interpretation SRQ049J1

In terms of price and availability, the standard edition ref. SRQ047J1 is £2,350 while the 100th Anniversary limited edition ref. SRQ049J1 is £2,500 with only 1,000 pieces being produced. Both are presented on an interesting 9 row bracelet with contrasting thick and thin links. Seiko have released a lot of watches this year and I can easily imagine this becoming the best seller out of the lot thanks to its class and relative simplicity. People love classics.

Price and Specs:

Model: Seiko Prospex Speedtimer 'Panda' 1972 Chronograph Re-interpretation
Ref: SRQ047J1 (Panda), SRQ049J1 (limited edition)
Case: 42mm diameter x 14.6mm thickness, stainless steel
Dial: Dark grey or silver with silver or gunmetal grey subdials
Water resistance: 100m (10 bar)
Movement: Seiko calibre 8R48, automatic, 34 jewels
Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 45h
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date, chronograph
Strap: Stainless steel bracelet with additional leather strap (limited edition only)
Price: £2,350 (SRQ047J1) and £2,500, limited to 1,000 pieces (SRQ049J1)

More details at Seiko Boutique.

2 Comments

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  • 14.6mm is pretty thick. Seiko could’ve done so much better IMO.

    SEIKO Presage 60th Anniversary Chronograph Urushi & Enamel owner here, another thick “limited edition” from Seikosha.

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About the author

Michael Sonsino

As Digital Editor for Oracle Time, Michael needs an eye for detail, which makes it a good thing that his twin joys in life are miniatures and watches. He's a lifelong fan of fine timepieces, especially those of a more historic nature - if it has a twist of Art Deco, all the better. Recent purchase: Seiko Prospex 1959 Alpinist Modern Re-Interpretation. Grail watch: Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921.