Over the years, Seiko has undoubtedly created more than kits fair share of iconic watches, none of which are more memorable than its world-renowned SKX series. Marketed as a very affordable entry-level dive watch it proved to be an instant hit with fans of the Japanese watchmaking giant. Many watch geeks will tell you this was the watch that started their obsession. It offered great value for money and had dive watch specs. After more than 20yrs Seiko unexpectedly ceased production, instead expanding its Seiko 5 range to fill the void.
We were initially sceptical, but this latest quartet of Seiko 5 watches expertly reboots the SKX design. It also follows the latest trend for smaller watches and will no doubt prove to be another success story.
Seiko 5 Sports SKX Sports Style
Reference: SRPK29, SRPK31, SRPK33 and SRPK35
Case: Stainless Steel
Movement: 4R36 Automatic
Strap: Stainless Steel Bracelet
Water Resistance: 100M
Price: AUD $495.00
It’s worth taking a minute to note the lineage of these new SPRK watches. After first launching as a Japanese Domestic Market only model, the SKX dive watch really did prove to be a massive success. It was one of only a few affordable watches that could offer an in-house automatic movement in a legitimate dive watch.
But Seiko made a gamble. It also had a sports watch collection that covered much of the same ground as the SKX. Seiko figured that the entry-level buyer didn’t need a legitimate dive watch so the SKX was discontinued. In its place came a similar-looking dive-inspired Seiko 5 model. This too proved popular so Seiko has doubled down and announced four new watches that stick to this successful formula. The big story is the case size. These new models are presented in a smaller, more versatile package and it’s safe to say that we’re thrilled with the result.
The latest Seiko 5 sports watches offer the same style and functionality as the previous 42mm versions but in a modest 38mm case. It’s faithful to Seiko’s house style, used since the 80s’, with the most notable feature being the ergonomic crown repositioned to 4 o’clock.
The eye-catching dial also recreates Seiko’s classic aesthetic, with bold makers and hands. The day/date window is one of the five core tenets of the Seiko 5 range, as is the automatic movement and 100M of water resistance. This latest iteration comes in four colourways including the standard black of the original SKX. There’s also a bright orange option, an elegant champagne variant and a memorable teal dial that acknowledges another recent trend. The slight compromise on the dive watch functionality means that these latest diver-style models can be had for a little under $500.