This time last year Tudor released two versions of the Black Bay in precious metals and while many people raved about them, others wondered if gold and silver cases were really in the spirit of a serious dive watch. Now though, anyone looking for a technical, attractive tool watch will be appeased by the new Tudor Black Bay Pro with an adventure ready steel case and bezel with a GMT function.
The Black Bay Pro is the beginning of a new family within the Black Bay collection so while it’s recognisably a Black Bay there are a few stylistic differences across its case and dial. The case measures 39mm in diameter (somewhat surprising given the appetite for tool watches 42mm and above) and is made from stainless steel with a matching fixed steel bezel with a 24-hour scale. The most notable change from the regular BB is the crown, which now has more pronounced knurling and is set flush to the case, rather than showing any of its tube.
It gives the piece a technical appearance with a clear focus on usability and utility. The durable steel is ideal for travel and the shorter crown means it’s less likely to get caught on objects. Plus, the Black Bay Pro is just as capable at surviving underwater as every other Black Bay thanks to 200m water resistance.
As mentioned, there have been tweaks to the dial as well. Obviously, there’s the addition of the GMT hand which works with the 24-hour bezel to display time in a second time zone. The GMT hand is bright yellow with an angular shape that enhances its “snowflake” design, a Tudor staple.
The brightness of the yellow is complemented by the swap from a brown minute scale to a white one, making the piece feel fresh and modern as opposed to the BB’s usual retro slant. Lastly, Tudor have replaced the hour markers with monobloc ceramic ones that provide larger areas of luminescence for legibility.
The movement inside is the Calibre MT5652 from 2018, which includes the integrated GMT function alongside hours, minutes, seconds and the date. The fact the GMT is integrated and not a module tacked onto an existing movement is further proof of Tudor’s watchmaking skill. It has a 70-hour power reserve and an accuracy of +2/-4 seconds per day, which goes above the requirements of its COSC chronometer certification.
My one complaint would be that it doesn’t reach the superior master chronometer status that Tudor have proven they can attain, although that’s not surprising given the calibre debuted several years ago. We’ll have to continue to wait to see what Tudor’s next master chronometer will be.
There’s also a trio of new strap and bracelet options to go with the Black Bay Pro, which pay homage to straps and bracelets of the past. The first is a black Jacquard fabric piece with a yellow band that goes really well with the GMT hand, it’s produced by the Julien Faure company who Tudor have been collaborating with for 12 years. Secondly, there’s a three-link stainless steel bracelet which is a modern interpretation of Tudor bracelets from the 50s and 60s with a stepped design and visible rivet heads. Lastly there’s a rubber and fabric fusion piece.
This is the Black Bay in its ultimate tool watch form, from its technical appearance to its enhanced utility. Stylish yet practical. There’s a lot to love, especially for £2,840 for a black fabric and hybrid rubber/fabric strap or £3,080 with a bracelet.
Price & Specs:
Model: Tudor Black Bay Pro
Reference: M79470-0001 (stainless steel bracelet)
M79470-002 (black fabric strap with yellow band)
M79470-003 (hybrid rubber/fabric strap)
Case/dial: 39mm diameter x 13.8mm height, polished and satin finish stainless steel case, black domed dial, 24-hour graduated fixed bezel in satin-brushed steel, screw-down winding crown in steel with the TUDOR rose
Water resistance: 200m (20 bar)
Movement: In-house Calibre MT5652, COSC certified, 28 jewels
Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 70h
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, 2nd time zone
Strap: Riveted stainless steel bracelet with folding clasp, hybrid rubber and leather strap with steel folding clasp or black fabric with yellow band and buckle
Price/availability: £2,840 (hybrid rubber/fabric strap / black fabric strap with yellow band) and £3,080 (stainless steel bracelet)
More details at Tudor.