If you are a regular visitor to this website, you will probably remember a “Dive Watch Wednesday” article in which I revealed my personal “Top 5 Most Wanted” list of dive watch models currently produced. The good news is, recently, this list theoretically got one watch shorter. The bad news? That open spot has almost immediately been filled by the next contender (hint: it starts with a “B” and ends with “athyscaphe”). But that’s a different story for another time, of course.
I finally found the time to extensively review the Tudor Pelagos, introduced in 2012 (and inspired by the Greek word “pelagós,” meaning “sea”). The Pelagos is a 500-meter water-resistant dive watch featuring a light-weight, brushed titanium case and bracelet (the caseback and clasp are made of stainless steel of a slightly different tone). This version contains an ETA 2824-2 movement of the highest grade, an integrated helium-release valve, a flat sapphire crystal and a ceramic bezel inlay with impressively integrated lume.
The folding clasp offers not only an integrated extension, but also a flexible segment that will automatically adjust to differently compressed dive suits (which we’ve presented here). Alternatively, you also get a rubber strap with an additional extension (we’d personally prefer a strap that could do without re-using the bracelet’s end links, but that’s a matter of taste, and a typical execution for Rolex and Tudor watches).
Speaking of taste: while certainly not everyone will like the Tudor Pelagos’s distinctive “snowflake” hour hand, or the rather technical aesthetic of this large, 42-mm watch (which is why Tudor cleverly introduced another dive watch style, the Black Bay, as well), I think it is currently one of the most appealing luxury watches developed with the intent of actually being used for diving. In other words, from a design perspective, it doesn’t enter the segment of “extreme” dive watches. The watch is also a great example of how to interpret one of the most iconic watch designs, in use more than 60 years, for a modern audience.
To be honest, the Tudor Pelagos has proven to be one of the very few watches we’ve encountered in which we didn’t find much of anything to criticize. Yes, some of the square hour markers seem slightly off-center in some (extremely close-up) photos when compared to the cut-outs of the rehaut ring. But unless you are planning on always carrying a top-level macro lens around, you shouldn’t notice this, thanks to the overall matte finish.
I am not sure how the white, applied markers with the sealed-in blue lume will age compared to (for example) the hands. And I don’t know how the (presumably softer) lume in the (definitely harder) bezel inlay will deal with bumps or scratches over time. But this is pure speculation for the time being.
So, perhaps I’ll plan to do another review of the Tudor Pelagos five to 10 years from now. That shouldn’t be a problem, since I wasn’t planning to return it anyway, right?
This article was originally published in 2014 and has been updated.