TUDOR introduces the newest Black Bay, the latest technical and aesthetic evolution of the emblematic diving watch with a burgundy bezel. Representing the latest in Black Bay, this model features evolved design elements, a “T-fit” clasp and is Master Chronometer-certified by METAS.
The original Black Bay first launched in 2012 with a burgundy bezel and it was given the Manufacture Calibre treatment in 2016. Now it returns in a third evolution foreshadowing the aesthetic and technical future of the line. Named Black Bay, this emblematic design in the TUDOR collection is another example of TUDOR's expert command of one of the industry's most demanding standards in terms of chronometry and resistance to magnetic fields. Tested by the Federal Institute of Metrology or METAS, the Black Bay brings together cutting-edge watchmaking technology with design elements inspired by TUDOR’s nearly seven-decade heritage of making robust professional diving watches.
With the introduction of Black Bay, TUDOR has successfully submitted yet another Black Bay model for tests to obtain a Master Chronometer certification, as part of a constant bid to improve the quality of its products. This is the third application of this standard to a watch in the TUDOR collection, and a step towards a future where the entire collection is METAS certified. This certification, which requires a substantial number of changes to a regular TUDOR Manufacture Calibre, means that TUDOR is able to extend substantially its offer of an accreditation by an independent body, confirming the exceptional quality of its watches.
COMPREHENSIVE INDEPENDENT CERTIFICATION AND HIGH STANDARDS
METAS Master Chronometer certification is comprehensive and covers the main functional characteristics of a watch including precision, resistance to magnetic fields, waterproofness and power reserve. Its standards are incredibly high, starting with precision. In order to qualify, a watch must be able to function within a 5-second range of variation each day (0 +5), that is to say 5 seconds less than the Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC) (-4 +6) carried out on a single movement and a second less than TUDOR's internal standard, which is applied to the brand's models with a Manufacture Calibre (-2 +4). The certification also guarantees the timekeeping accuracy of a watch subjected to magnetic fields of 15,000 gauss. Finally, it also guarantees that the waterproof capability claimed by the manufacturer conforms with the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) standard 22810:2010, as does the power reserve of each Master Chronometer watch. It should also be noted that two prerequisites are necessary before the certification can be obtained: Swiss manufacturing must conform with the criteria of Swiss Made, and the movement must be certified by the Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC).
CRITERIA AND TESTS FOR METAS CERTIFICATION
All the tests and prerequisites leading to the Master Chronometer certification, which the Black Bay has achieved, are summarised below:
THE MANUFACTURE CALIBRE MT5602-U
The Manufacture Calibre MT5602-U, which powers the Black Bay, displays hour, minute and seconds functions. It offers the general look and feel of TUDOR Manufacture Calibres with dedicated sun laser design and bears the Master Chronometer mention on its bridges, emphasising its distinctive performance. Its rotor is fashioned in tungsten monobloc and is openworked. It also features the distinctive laser radial grooving with sand-blasted details. Its bridges and mainplate have alternate sand-blasted and polished surfaces and laser decorations.
Its build is designed to ensure robustness and precision. To do this, the variable inertia balance wheel is maintained by a sturdy traversing bridge with two-point anchoring. This system together with its non-magnetic silicon hairspring, means the Manufacture Calibre MT5602-U is able to function within a tolerance range of 5 seconds (0/+5) tested on a fully assembled watch.
Another notable feature is that the power reserve of the Manufacture Calibre MT5602-U Calibre is “weekend-proof”; that is to say, it has been certified for 70 hours by METAS, which enables the wearer to take the watch off on a Friday evening and put it back on again on Monday morning without having to wind it. Even if you need a weekend away, your watch does not.
The Black Bay with burgundy bezel remains one of TUDOR’s most recognized and recognizable models. In its latest iteration, named Black Bay, the case keeps the original proportions of a 41mm in diameter case with a thinner profile. The unidirectional rotatable bezel offers very prehensible sides and its insert shows subtly curved numerals aligning with the outline of the outer ring. However, the aesthetic details don’t stop at case dimensions and bezel. The seconds hand recalls the look of the early diving watches of the brand with a lollipop design while the satin black dial is subtly radial-brushed for a very subtle shine under direct light. Ergonomics have evolved as well, with a redesigned crown, reminiscent of the curves found on the crowns of the brand's historical technical watches, that is set flush to the middle case band so that its tube is not visible.
STEEL BRACELETS OR RUBBER STRAP, ALL WITH “T-FIT”
The Black Bay comes fitted with either an entirely satin-brushed three-link steel bracelet or a five-oval-shaped-link brushed and polished steel bracelet, both complete with the TUDOR “T-fit” clasp equipped with a system for rapid length adjustment. Easy to use, requiring no tools and offering five positions, this practical system allows wearers to carry out a fine, instant adjustment of the total length of the bracelet along an adjustment window of 8mm. The clasp features ceramic ball bearings that ensure a smooth and secure closure in addition to adding a pleasing tactile element to the action of the clasp.
A black rubber strap option is also available for the Black Bay. The strap comes in three sizes complete with TUDOR “T-fit” clasp, and for the perfect fit, it is able to be cut down to the exact size of the wearer’s wrist. On the inside it features the signature snowflake motif for added grip, and it is form-fitted specifically for the Black Bay.
THE ESSENCE OF BLACK BAY
The Black Bay line features dials inspired by the TUDOR divers’ watches produced during the 1950s. It borrows the characteristic angular hands known to collectors as “Snowflake” from models that appeared in the brand’s 1969 catalogue. Its unprotected crown and the characteristics of its case are reminiscent of the first generations of TUDOR divers' watches.
The Black Bay line is the result of the subtle blend of traditional aesthetics and contemporary watchmaking. Far from simply being an identical re-release of a classic, it brings together over sixty years of TUDOR dive watches, whilst at the same time being resolutely anchored in the present. It is neo-vintage in conception, yet its manufacturing techniques, reliability, robustness and the quality of its finish are consistent with today's more rigorous requirements.
THE TUDOR MANUFACTURE
Every TUDOR watch, including the Black Bay, is assembled and fully tested to TUDOR’s superior standards at the new TUDOR Manufacture located in the Le Locle, Switzerland. This new state-of-the-art facility, bringing together the know-how of watchmakers with the best in production management and automated testing systems, was completed in 2021 after three years of construction. All decked out in TUDOR red, the Manufacture spans over four levels totalling 5,500 square meters and is physically and visually connected to the neighbouring Kenissi Manufacture, the TUDOR movement production facility founded in 2016. With Kenissi and a network of TUDOR-owned affiliates, the brand has been able to integrate the development and production of high-performance mechanical calibres. As a consequence, TUDOR now fully masters the manufacturing of strategic components and can guarantee their quality.