Tudor is a global name in divers’ watches. Tudor has a reputation for precision timepieces, backed by its long military and maritime history.
The Tudor Black Bay GMT 41 is a new incarnation of the famous Black Bay line, specifically designed to appeal to those of you who like to travel. Whether you want to have an adventure near home, or travel the world and dive in far flung oceans, the Tudor Black Bay GMT 41 has plenty to offer.
Tudor got its beginnings because Hans Wilsdorf, founder of Rolex, wanted to create an alternative to Rolex. His vision was to offer watches with the same high quality, at a more affordable price.
Having taken a look at the Tudor Black Bay GMT 41 we can say for certain that he succeeded in his aims!
The Tudor Black Bay GMT 41 has all the features and quality you’d expect from the Black Bay line, with an exciting addition: World time functionality. This is the perfect traveller’s watch, offering precision time-keeping no matter where you roam.
And of course, it also retains the line’s underwater features, that made it popular with several navies, including the Marine Nationale of France and the US Navy SEALs.
Let’s take a closer look at the Tudor Black Bay GMT 41.
Wilsdorf registered Montres Tudor SA in 1926, and founded it as a company twenty years later, in 1946. The first Tudor watches paired Rolex cases with off-the-shelf movements. They were solid and reliable, but without the price tag of a Rolex.
In the 1950s, Tudor established itself as a diving watch manufacturer, with the Tudor Oyster Prince Submariner ref 7922. The Oyster collection paired the exclusive Rolex Oyster case with Tudor’s unique style. The screwed down Oyster caseback kept the watch safe from water leaking into it, while the domed plexiglass crystal protected the front of the watch. Tudor added a screw-in crown to stop water getting into the movement.
The scientific expedition team who travelled from Britain to Greenland in 1952 helped popularise the Tudor Oyster Prince. They took 26 Tudor Oyster Princes with them on the trip.
The Tudor Black Bay collection is the modern descendent of Tudor’s iconic heritage diving watches. Some of the classic features that still feature on the watches today include:
- Tudor’s characteristic snowflake hands (first featured in 1969.)
- A dial that’s clearly been inspired by the look of those first Tudor Oyster Prince watches.
- A domed glass.
- Easy to read baton and dot luminescent markers.
- A sturdy crown that uses size and weight, rather than a case guard, to protect the movement.
Tudor Black Bay watches are part of history. From military use to their popularity during the Scuba diving craze, Black Bay watches have been part of the evolution of diving watches.
Today’s modern Black Bay models pay homage to their heritage lines, while adding variations in features and style that mean there’s a watch in this line for nearly every wearer.
The Tudor Black Bay GMT 41 has an instantly distinctive appearance that we think watch collectors will either love, or hate. This is a bold-looking watch that isn’t afraid to make a statement.
The unusual blue and burgundy colourway on the bezel absolutely calls to mind the “Pepsi” colouring of the Rolex GMT-Master II. But the Tudor version has a more matt and muted look that isn’t as instantly high-contrast. It’s an homage to the Rolex GMT-Master, while still making the colouring all its own.
The Tudor Black Bay GMT 41 also features:
- A black dial.
- Luminous hands and hour markers.
- A date window at 3 o’clock.
- Classic Tudor Snowflake hands on the hour, second, and 24 hour hands (more on those 24 hour hands in a minute.)
- Brushed and polished stainless steel bezel and bracelet with a safety clasp for added security and comfort.
This watch features a broad hour hand, and the dot and baton markers are chunky and brave. This is a watch designed for ultimate ease of use under water, and it shows. We particularly love the big statement crown, complete with Tudor Rose decoration. The Black Bay GMT 41 is packed with personality, and looks sporty and adventurous.
Features and Specs
Let’s start this section with the thing that makes the Black Bay Tudor GMT 41 stand out: Its time zone function.
Thanks to the smart combination of a rotating bezel and a 24 hour hand (complete with that Tudor snowflake!) you can use this watch to tell the time in more than one time zone.
To use the time zone function, all you have to do is twist the rotating bezel until the 24 hour hand aligns with the correct hour. The rotating bezel has 48 separate positions that let you set it to track time zones that are half an hour apart from the next zone. We love this attention to detail, making it so much easier to set your second time zone accurately. Not every time zone is measured in whole hours – and Tudor have taken this into account.
Now we see that the lovely blue and burgundy colour scheme isn’t just there to look good. It also lets you know whether it’s day or night in your selected second time zone.
As fantastic as this feature is, there’s more to the Tudor Black Bay GMT 41 than time zones. Other features worth a look include:
- Scratch resistant domed sapphire crystal glass.
- The fact that this watch is waterproof to 200m.
- The astonishing 70 hour power reserve, which is noticeably bigger than the usual 38 hour power reserves we see on watches of this calibre.
- Riveted steel bracelet with safety catch.
- A Calibre MT5652 automatic movement with bidirectional rotor system.
This is a solid, weighty yet sporty-looking watch. It’s got all the features you need for diving and travelling, while looking fantastic to boot.
Although we like the Rolex “Pepsi” colours, dare we say the slighted muted version on the Black Bay Tudor GMT 41 is just that little bit more subtle and classy? There, we said it.
With the extra 24 hour hand, the date window, the thick indexes and three of Tudor’s classic snowflake hands, this dial is not shy and retiring. But it’s just on the right side of being too busy. The thickness and dimensions of the dial keep it well balanced and highly readable, despite everything that’s going on.
The Tudor Black Bay GMT 41 is a lovely, wearable watch that’s ideal for daily use. We’d say the overall look doesn’t quite lend itself to a formal setting, but business casual, leisure time, and travel are all fair game.
Some wearers might find it a little heavy on the wrist, but we think it’s versatile enough to suit most wrist sizes and still be comfortable.
The Tudor Black Bay GMT 41mm retails for £3,300
The Tudor Black Bay GMT 41mm is a brilliantly versatile watch. The time zone feature is fab, and if you travel regularly for business or leisure, we think you’ll want to check this one out. With the ability to track different time zones, you’ll be able to avoid the dreaded accidental midnight phone call to your friends or family back home.
Overall, we love this watch. It calls to mind the golden era of Tudor diving watches, while bringing a fresh, modern update to the look. This watch has great personality and is a tiny bit flashy, but only enough to make the right impression.