While not the biggest release from Tudor for Watches and Wonders 2023, the brand has made some meaningful changes to the Black Bay 31/36/39/41 line, with an updated movement, upgraded bracelet, and some new dial colors (and the discontinuation of the silver dial option). Plus, all three new colors will have the option of lumed or diamond hour markers.
Model: Black Bay 31/36/39/41
Dimensions: 31/36/39/41mm diameter
Water Resistance: 100m
Case Material: Stainless steel
Strap/Bracelet: Bracelet with T-fit quick-adjust clasp
Crystal/Lens: Sapphire crystal
Movement:MT5201/MT5400/MT5602/MT5601 (all COSC)
Power Reserve: 50/70/70/70 hours
Operating Frequency: 28,800 vph/4hz
Price: Lumed markers: $3,725/$3,825/$3,950/$4.050 USD. For diamond markers: $4,450/$4,675/$4,800/$4,900 USD
The cases here remain unchanged. Available in your choice of 31, 36, 39, or 41mm, they feature sapphire crystals and screw-down crowns for 100m water resistance. There’s a blend of polished and satin finishing, with chamfers running from the bezel to the ends of the lugs. Most importantly, though, the Black Bay has been updated with the brand’s new T-fit quick-adjustment clasp on the Jubilee-style bracelet, allowing for on-the-fly sizing throughout the day. I doubt many people didn’t buy the Black Bay for lack of such a mechanism, but I bet it will be a selling point for some who have been on the fence.
With the silver and black dials gone, the stainless steel Black Bay options are now light champagne, blue, and a brand-new anthracite that calls to mind the Black Bay 54 (which also saw a new release this year). The dials are all sunburst with contrasting printing: gold for the anthracite, black for the champagne, and white for the blue. They all feature applied hour markers, but not that the non-cardinal markers are available in either lumed plots or diamonds if you’re feeling flashy. The signature snowflake hour hand remains, and the dials are still kept clean and balanced without a date. The lume on all is Super-LumiNova, with white application on the blue and champagne dials and the creamy Old Radium on the anthracite.
For this batch of Black Bays, Tudor has finally put in its in-house movements. Every size now features Tudor’s in-house MT calibers. These are made by Tudor through its movement manufacture Kenissi and several of them have been featured in other movements before. They are all COSC certified and run at 28,800 vph or 4 hz. Of note, the MT5201 in the 31mm model has a 50-hour power reserve while the other three deliver 70 hours. It really depends on how you rotate and store your watches, but that’s nearly a full day difference, and while 5mm isn’t nothing, it may be worth jumping up to the 36mm if this will your daily wear.
This may be Tudor’s least exciting release this year, but it’s not one that should be ignored. Yes, Tudor is continuing its trend towards renaming itself Black Bay Watches, but the entry-level, no-frills watches herein are an easy way for many to enter into Swiss sports watches. By equipping them with its in-house movements and adding some dial variety, Tudor is courting a wider audience with a better watch. Pricing starts at $3,725 USD and the watches are available immediately. For more information, please visit the brand’s website.