When the Tudor Pelagos FXD took the award for best dive watch at last year’s Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève we knew the watch was something special. A big selling point for this functional piece was the revival of the historical relationship between the Swiss watchmaker and the French Navy. The award-winning watch was the result of a new collaboration with the French Navy, this time with its combat swimmers, Commando Hubert. Building on that success and revisiting Tudor’s relationship with the US Navy, the Pelagos FXD is back in a stunning new black dial variation.
As much as we love celebrity endorsements and inspirational brand ambassadors, nothing beats a watch collab with real-life heroes. That’s particularly true when the watch is designed for life-or-death situations and issued to the military.
For this latest Pelagos FXD model Tudor is keen to emphasise its work with the US Navy that first began in the mid-’50s. Tudor went on to equip the Navy with dive watches for decades, notably supplying timepieces to the Navy Seals from the ’60s to the ’80s.
It’s to those early models that the latest iteration of the FXD pays tribute, although, for fans of the current blue version, it will all feel very familiar. Both watches feature the same 42mm titanium case with the all-important fixed lugs and a satin finish to reduce light reflections.
The case is paired with a unidirectional titanium bezel with a ceramic insert that is sand-blasted to increase functionality in the field. It’s easy to see why Tudor is marketing this watch not only as a successor to its earlier models but also as a modern-day ‘milsub’ or Military Submariner.
The similarities to previous military-issued Tudors are apparent with the signature snowflake hands being a hallmark of its ’60s models. Although they’re now a core element of modern-day Tudor watches, like the fixed strap bars, they were originally developed to enhance the functionality of the watch. The snowflake hands were designed to aid legibility in challenging conditions.
It’s that practicality that has made the Tudor Pelagos FXD one of the world’s best watches and this new version features a utilitarian matte black dial without a date window and with simple dial text. The one-piece fabric strap has been developed by French expert Julien Faure and the automatic movement is the same Calibre MT5602 as used in the blue variant. With 200M of water resistance, the new model ticks all the boxes needed to achieve the ISO 6425:2018 dive watch standard and it should prove to be as popular as its predecessors.
TUDOR Pelagos FXD
Movement: Manufacture Calibre MT5602
Strap: Forest Green Fabric and Dark Grey Rubber
Water Resistance: 200M
Price: CHF 3’900