Introducing the Tudor Pelagos 39By Ross Povey
I remember discussing the Pelagos with a fellow Tudor geek a number of years ago and we both agreed that the watch was the true heir to the vintage Tudor throne. With its snowflake hands and square hour markers, it was a proper tool in the spirit of the hardworking watch that Tudor had always offered and, indeed, had been lapped up by military forces around the globe. Any fears that it would fade into the shadows of the Black Bay were allayed when Tudor gave us the Pelagos LHD. Again, a watch for old school Tudor enthusiasts, the ‘patina’ on the hands and hours, red line of text and roulette date were just what the doctor ordered, and the individual caseback numbers were a novel offering from the House of Wilsdorf. The Pelagos, however, truly came front and center last year with the launch of FXD, a military spec watch designed with and used by the Marine Nationale. It was the watch I’d always dreamed of. Now to add another dimension to the line, we have Pelagos 39, a watch with many of the family traits, but a new proposition in its own right.
The Pelagos 39 does what it says on the tin. In line with the hugely popular and wearable Black Bay Fifty-Eight and Black Bay Pro, Tudor has reduced the size from 42mm to 39mm. A small but significant tweak of the formula. Pitched as a bridge between city and sea, the watch is as at home at the hotel bar as it is on the wrist exploring the sub-aquatic sand bar. Eagle eyes will note the lack of helium escape valve that was a key feature of the Pelagos and Pelagos LHD. Much like the FXD, the Pelagos 39 is for shallower diving and general water use, and not for saturation diving for which the escape valve is a necessity. The watch is, however, in full brushed titanium and comes with both the titanium bracelet and a rubber strap like the other watches in the family.
Adding to the versatility of the new watch, Tudor have opted for a sunray finish dial and ceramic bezel insert which contrast nicely with the matte finish of the case. The monobloc luminous ceramic hour markers that we first saw on the Black Bay Pro earlier this year are present on the dial and are in the latest Grade X1 Super-LumiNova with blue emission. Also present on the dial, and a nice nod for the vintage lovers, is the red PELAGOS line on the dial. To answer the prayers of Tudor fans the titanium bracelet is equipped with the ever popular T-Fit clasp that offers instant fine adjustments, which is particularly useful when swimming or on holiday when your wrist size can perpetually fluctuate.
If there was a gap in the Pelagos family, then the new ‘39’ plugs it well in my opinion. Sporty and elegant and without the necessary heft of the saturation-diving watches, I am pretty sure this watch is going to have mass appeal!
Tudor Pelagos 39
Movement: Caliber MT5400 self-winding mechanical movement with bi-directional rotor system
Functions: Hours, minutes and seconds
Case: 39mm grade 2 titanium case with satin finish
Dial: Black sunray satin finish
Strap: Titanium three-link bracelet with Tudor “T-fit” folding clasp; additional black rubber strap with buckle and diver’s extension
Price: CHF 4,200