This evocative Tudor dive watch takes you back to when it all started.
The word ‘icon’ is conferred a little too easily these days. When it comes to the Tudor Black Bay, however, the accolade is not only apt, but thoroughly deserved. Exuding both nostalgia and utilitarianism, it is as if the Black Bay has existed for many decades, perfected over time to be what it is today. Truth is, the collection was introduced only in 2012, making it an unequivocally modern creation.
The Black Bay’s meteoric rise is hewn from the brand’s rich and authentic lineage, drawing much inspiration from watches of the past. An excellent example is the latest offering from Tudor – the Black Bay 54, described as “the purest modern expression of the brand’s first-ever dive watch”.
The Black Bay 54’s name provides the first clue: it references the year 1954, when Tudor launched its first-ever dive watch. Known as the Oyster Prince Submariner Reference 7922, the pioneering dive watch serves as a blueprint and starting point for the modern-day Black Bay collection—in particular, the Black Bay 54.
Housed in a 37mm steel case, the Black Bay 54 harks back to the proportions of the Reference 7922. While it is true that the smaller case size exudes a retro spirit—the current Black Bay models range from 41mm to 31mm cases—the Black Bay 54’s dimensions and profile also enhances its versatility, making it a great unisex offering for both gents and ladies.
Having said that, if you prefer a more substantially sized Black Bay, we recommend the Black Bay 58, which comes in a 39mm case, and the Black Bay models in 41mm cases, fitted with the MT5603 automatic movement, Tudor’s COSC-certified in-house calibre with 70-hour power reserve.
But back to the Black Bay 54. The watch’s throwback-inspired references don’t just end with the 37mm case. As it is with early versions of the Reference 7922, the Black Bay 54 features a pared-down unidirectional bezel. Unlike other Black Bay models, the Black Bay 54 does away with the graduated hash marks on the dive countdown indicator. It also replaces the emblematic red triangle at 12 o’clock for a simple silver one. Elsewhere, bezel’s edge has been redesigned to allude to the look of the vintage model. All these contribute to the Black Bay 54’s fuss-free aesthetic.
At the same time, the Black Bay’s aesthetic codes remain prominent and instantly recognisable. The ‘Snowflake’ hour hand, the ‘lollipop’ seconds hand, the screw-down crown with Tudor’s rose motif, and domed sapphire crystal case have all been resized to harmonious proportions on the Black Bay 54.
Even though the watch pays homage to the past, its performance, functionality, and wearability express modernity and excellence. On the outside, the watch guarantees optimum legibility in low-light conditions with a high-contrast dial, accompanied by hands and markers filled with Grade A Super-LumiNova.
The Black Bay 54 comes in a choice of supple rubber strap or three-link bracelet. Both are equipped with Tudor’s proprietary “T-fit” clasp with rapid adjustment system that allows you to carry out fine, instant adjustments for a snug and comfortable fit.
Equally performance-focused on the inside, the Black Bay 54 is driven by Tudor’s Manufacture Calibre MT5400. Developed and built in-house, the automatic movement is COSC-certified and accurate to -2/+4 seconds a day. It is also “weekend-proof” with 70-hour power reserve. This means that you can leave the Black Bay 54 on the dresser on a Friday, wear it on Monday, and it will keep perfect time without you having to wind or set it.
It is tempting to draw comparisons between the Black Bay 54 and the Oyster Prince Submariner Reference 7922 by appearances alone. However just like its forebear, the Black Bay 54 is also distinguished by its technical prowess and performance virtues; ensuring a complete and authentic reflection of Tudor’s legacy in dive watches.