This seems like a strange time to be releasing a new GMT watch, especially since it feels like the entire world is on lockdown and no one is traveling anymore. Still, life must go on, right? And a new watch is always a good chance to cast our attention to something more fun and less serious. And even if you aren’t traveling, a GMT watch is a handy tool if you have family, friends, or business associates living in different time zones. The new GMT watch that I’m referring to is the Christopher Ward C65 GMT Worldtimer.
For longtime Christopher Ward followers, the name reveals much. C65 means it belongs to Christopher Ward’s lineup of vintage-inspired watches. And obviously, it’s a GMT watch with worldtimer capability ― but more on that later. The C65 GMT Worldtimer comes in a 41mm-wide stainless steel case — 42mm if you measure the bezel, which protrudes a little. The case is just a smidge over 12mm-thick, which is quite remarkable considering it has a water resistance rating of 150 meters.
It looks to be quite nicely finished, too, with polished bevels running down the flank and a satin-finished top. Taking a leaf out of vintage dive watches, the C65 GMT Worldtimer has a large exposed crown that’s signed with the Christopher Ward logo. Accentuating its vintage-inspired looks is a heavily domed box-shaped sapphire crystal. The bezel is quite wide, but it hides its girth well thanks to a silver inner ring and a black outer ring. Printed on it are the various cities for the worldtimer function.
The dial is black and has a matte finish. It’s surrounded by a fixed bi-color 24-hour chapter ring with the nighttime hours in yellow and the daytime hours in white. The hands are baton-style, which matches the similarly styled hour indices. Both hands and indices are filled with Super-LumiNova Grade X1 GL C1. The GMT hand is yellow and unusually large, which is actually not a bad thing because it’s easy to see — something which cannot be said for many GMT watches.
This isn’t a Louis Cottier-style worldtimer; the function requires human intervention. To find out the time in other parts of the world, simply align the city that represents your timezone on the bezel to the time on the 24-hour scale. So assuming it’s 2pm in Hong Kong and you want to find out the time in Los Angeles, you would turn the bezel until Hong Kong sits through 14 on the 24-hour scale. Then, you’ll be able to see that when it’s 2pm in Hong Kong, it’s 11pm in Los Angeles.
The movement inside is a Sellita SW330. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to see it through the solid screw-down DLC caseback. This isn’t a true GMT movement a la Rolex GMT-Master with independent jumping hour hands. Instead, the GMT hand can be independently set. The downside with such a movement is that it’s a bit more cumbersome to adjust when you are traveling across time zones, especially if you want the GMT hand to point to your home time. The upside, however, is that it has a quickset date. The Sellita SW330 beats at 4Hz and it has a power reserve of 42 hours.
Vintage-inspired dive watches have been all the rage for the past couple of years, and the trend seems to show no signs of dying. Still, the C65 GMT Worldtimer is an interesting take on the genre mainly because it is one of the few vintage-inspired watches to actually have dimensions closer to vintage watches. I know it’s quite wide, but its thin case is something worth celebrating. As a point of reference, the Tudor Black Bay GMT also has a 41mm-wide case, but it’s about 15mm-thick. The Christopher Ward C65 GMT Worldtimer is priced at $1,250 USD with a stainless steel bracelet and $1,140 with a leather strap or Cordura and rubber hybrid strap. For more information, visit christopherward.com.