October 26, 2018
by David Bredan
Just announced was the first-ever Seiko limited edition series that is truly exclusive for this magical place called Europe, comprising two watches: the Seiko Prospex “Dawn Grey” Turtle SRPD01K1 and Seiko Prospex “Dawn Grey” Samurai SRPD03K1.
Both Seiko Prospex “Dawn Grey” releases are limited to just 2,018 pieces because that’s the year – according to the Gregorian calendar – these nice watches make their debut. They are called “Dawn Grey” because they were, apparently, inspired by the colors of dawn over the sea. Us Europeans I’d go out on a limb and say do not generally associate the color grey with the open seas – unless you are somewhere from the Very North – but then again, a Seiko watch whose name made sense in any offspring of the Anglo-Saxon languages would be considered an instant collectible anyway.
The Samurai comes with slightly reduced functionality for a slightly reduced price, so let’s look at that first. The Seiko Prospex “Dawn Grey” Samurai SRPD03K1 is presented in a 43.8 by 13.4-millimeter stainless steel case with a 60-minute unidirectional timing bezel, a Hardlex crystal, screw-down crown, and 200-meter water resistance rating. Its 4R35 caliber offers a date window at 3, automatic winding, a rather measly 41 hours of power reserve matched to an equally meh-inducing 3Hz operating frequency. Specs-wise the SRPD03K1 is not bad, but it’s definitely not great either.
The case is matched to a triple-link stainless steel bracelet that sports a diving extension for those times when you perform saturation dives in a drawer of your office desk. Its dial has a hobnail pattern – not super nicely defined, but it’s there to create some decent contrast between the grey dial and the black outline of the hands and massive indices. A few drops of orange on the seconds hand and 3-6-9-12 markers on the flange ring match nicely with the orange in the bezel – a solid design choice. These little details keep the entire watch neatly together, bonding case and dial nicely for a more coherent look.
Price for the Seiko Prospex “Dawn Grey” Samurai SRPD03K1 is €470.
The Seiko Prospex “Dawn Grey” Turtle SRPD01K1 comes in the aptly named Turtle case, with its wide, flared lugs and case profile. In my experience, these are more comfortable than the Samurai, but then again, your preference may vary. The SRPD01K1 is 45mm wide and 13.42mm thick, crafted from stainless steel – with a high-quality touch of a polished edge and brushed top surfaces. The bezel differs from the one on the Samurai in its larger ridges and 0-20 orange segment as opposed to the cheaper models 0-15 scale and more intricate bezel profile.