This time last year we were singing the praises of a new military-grade dive watch, Tudor’s Pelagos FXD. Fast forward to November 2022 and this timepiece has been recognised as the best diver’s watch at the annual Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève awards ceremony. Considering the quality of the other entries this is a major coup for the Swiss watchmaker, all the sweeter as it was presented in the brand’s home town. It gives us a great excuse to take another look at a luxury watch that boasts real military pedigree and a series of Tudor firsts.
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The Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève showcases and rewards the year’s best watch releases and acts as a promotion for the art of watchmaking. Its jury contemplates nominations for a bunch of categories, ranging from Calendar and Astronomy to Artistic Crafts. The Diver’s watch category considers watches based on their design, functionality and materials used – it’s an ideal fit for a watch like the Pelagos FXD that has such a strong backstory.
The Tudor Pelagos FXD revives a collaboration with the French Navy that has its roots in the ’50s and led to the brand being an official Navy supplier from 1961. Working together to create robust and reliable watches, the input from the Navy – combined with Tudor’s watchmaking expertise – led to a stunning model, reference 9401. It’s that iconic military watch that provides the inspiration for this modern piece.
This new iteration continues that relationship and was developed with help from Commando Hubert, the French Navy’s combat swimmers. It’s a very practical and versatile watch that blends hints of vintage styling alongside modern watchmaking technology. Stylistically, it follows the familiar Pelagos template, with the case having a comfortable 42mm diameter. Forged from a single block of titanium, the case has a matt finish and, in a first for the brand, features fixed lugs – hence the FXD moniker. Harking back to Navy-issued models, the strap of choice is a one-piece fabric that was developed by French expert Julien Faure.
The rich navy blue dial gives the watch a touch of colour and is paired with Tudor’s signature snowflake hands. Along with the markers, they’re equipped with grade X1 Swiss Super-LumiNova. Like the fixed lugs, the 120-notch rotating bezel is unique to this model and 200M of water resistance makes this a truly functional diver. The Tudor Pelagos FXD is already more affordable and practical than the recent extreme divers from Rolex and OMEGA – and it can also now add the title of Best Divers Watch to its list of attributes.
Tudor Pelagos FXD
Movement: Manufacture Calibre MT5602
Strap: One-piece fabric
Water Resistance: 200M