During Watches & Wonders, we saw terrific watches released by some of the best brands in the world, but the brand I was watching was the sister brand of Rolex, Tudor. Don’t get me wrong, Tudor is an independent brand; however, they seem to be going through the Rolex archive and designing watches with a similar aesthetic, but at the same time making them look better, in my opinion. I know it's a hot take, but something about the Black Bay line hits different from their higher-priced Rolex equivalents.
One watch released by Tudor at W&W that didn’t sit well with me is the new two-tone Black Bay GMT. The GMT isn’t a new watch for the Tudor catalogue, but the two-tone brown/black bezel (rootbeer) insert is stunning and a new colour option for the Black Bay GMT. Changing focus over to Rolex, a GMT Master II features the same bezel insert; however, the Rolex version has all rose gold accents while the Black Bay GMT features gold accents. That’s the part that throws me off. I'm well aware that the new version also features a leather and nato strap, but I am a big bracelet guy, and that's where my focus is today.
The Tudor Black Bay GMT with the rootbeer bezel insert features a gilt dial with a two-tone silver and gold bracelet. While gold accents on a black dial are always a great choice, the gold accents with the rootbeer bezel compromise the whole design and throw off the entire aesthetic. Don’t get me wrong, some people love this watch, but it just doesn’t sit well for me and is something I would pass up.
There are multiple ways Tudor could redeem the overall look of this watch. The first would be offering the watch on an all-stainless steel bracelet, not two-tone, just to create continuity between the case and the bracelet. The gold accents can be accentuated, and the watch's overall design isn’t disrupted. If the watch were to stay two-tone, then a rose gold/stainless steel bracelet with rose gold accents on the dial would be great.
I don’t want to come off like I’m putting Tudor on blast. It’s just not for me. I am a big fan of the brand and a big fan of the Black Bay GMT. This version was confusing to me, and I feel that Tudor missed the mark on something that could be another timeless addition to their already beautiful collections in the Black Bay line.