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Tissot Sideral Watch Review

Tissot Sideral

These days Tissot are inextricably linked to the success of the PRX. The accessible integrated sports watch has been an indelible hit and today accounts for an incredible percentage of the brand’s sales. I won’t say exactly how much; I’m not sure I’m allowed. Suffice it to say, it’s been good for them.

That’s not a bad thing, far from it. With the latest 35mm automatic variations, a few cool dial colours (ice blue, for example) and more riffing on the motif to come, they’re doing good things with the PRX. But it must be tempting to focus on their flagship model to the detriment of all else. They wouldn’t be the first brand to rely almost exclusively on a 1970s Genta-flavoured design. Thankfully the Tissot Sideral is a very different prospect.

Funnily enough, the Sideral is also from the 1960s/70s golden age of watch design. But rather than the slew of industrial, faceted watches that came out, the original watch was all about materials. Specifically, it used a monobloc fibreglass case, lightweight and at the time incredibly innovative. The colourful material was formed into an equally fun barrel-shaped case (it’s wider than what I’d call tonneau) for a seriously cool combination. Well, it’s back for 2023 and even more summer-ready than ever before.

Tissot Sideral
Tissot Sideral

The biggest change from the original is the case. Rather than fibreglass, the barrel case is now in forged carbon, arguably the modern successor to fibreglass and a lot better than the more common carbon fibre. That does mean it has a bit less colour, but given the brightness of hues on offer, toning it down a little’s no bad thing, particularly when it includes the quirky organic grain of forged carbon.

Instead, some of that colour has been brought onto the dial. On the original ‘70s version, the pronounced minute scale on the dial was in grey, against a black backdrop. It stood out, especially with the red and green regatta scale at 12 to two o’clock. Out of the three watches of the revamped Sideral, one maintains the original grey. The others however have changed it either to bright yellow or warm-weather-ready blue, the versions we have here in fact, which are the ones I much prefer. The mix of grey and forged carbon just doesn’t pop as much.

Not that you can’t add some extra colour of course. Both the blue and yellow come on colour-matched perforated rubber straps lifted directly from the original watch, while the grey’s default pairing is red. But you can also switch any of them out for green, orange, or black, whichever you feel like. Personally, I’d keep the default options, but I can see the pairing of green and yellow working nicely in a combination as refreshing as a can of Sprite.

Tissot Sideral
Tissot Sideral

On the wrist, it’s definitely light, just a bit weightier than you might be expecting. For me, that’s a massive positive, as my one issue with carbon is that it ends up feeling like a toy. There’s still a bit of that here, but just enough to make it comfortable without feeling flimsy. Paired with the perforated straps, the Sideral might just be one of the most wearable summer watches so far.

That said, while it might be a great, funky watch for the season, it’s still a serious diver. The authentic ‘70s unidirectional rotating bezel has seen a slight upgrade in crisp aesthetics, but is otherwise a standard, effective diving number. The Sideral case also has 300m water resistance, so it stands shoulder-to-shoulder with many much more serious, utilitarian divers. It might even be a cut above many of them, with its lumed bezel and regatta scale and, of course, it’s movement.

Tissot Sideral

The movement is the Powermatic 80. That’s not a surprise by now, it’s Swatch Groups ubiquitous entry-level movement for Tissot, Certina et al, and is one of the best accessible calibres on the market. Its 80 hours of power reserve is just the start, as it also includes a Nivachron hairspring for greater anti-magnetism and has all the reliability of the ETA 2824 that it’s based on. It also features an engraved rotor, but then what doesn’t?

The Sideral has a lot going for it; colour, heritage, diving specs, but what it really comes down to is price. Tissot are first and foremost a maker of solid, accessible watches (hence the success of the PRX), so where does this land? Well, at £915, it’s a lot of watch for the money, even by their standards. It won’t be eclipsing its sporty stablemate any time soon, but it’s good to see not just something a bit more tied to Tissot heritage – which still has plenty to offer, if you’re ever inclined to Google some of their vintage models – but is a fantastic watch in and of itself. In lieu of the unobtainable ice blue PRX 40mm, the yellow Sideral will do very, very nicely.

Price & Specs:

  • Model: Tissot Sideral
  • Ref: T145.407.97.057.00 (yellow)
    T145.407.97.057.01 (blue)
    T145.407.97.057.02 (red)
  • Case/dial: 41mm diameter, forged carbon and stainless steel case, black PVD bezel, black dial
  • Water resistance: 300m (30 bar)
  • Movement: Tissot calibre Powermatic 80, automatic
  • Frequency: 21,600 vph (4 Hz)
  • Power reserve: 80h
  • Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date
  • Strap: Perforated rubber with bracelet fastening system
  • Price/availability: £915

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About the author

Sam Kessler

Legend has it that Sam’s first word was ‘escapement’ and, while he might have started that legend himself, he’s been in the watch world long enough that it makes little difference. As the editor of Oracle Time, he’s our leading man for all things horological – even if he does love yellow dials to a worrying degree. Owns a Pogue; doesn’t own an Oyster Perpetual. Yet.