Will Summer 2020 be remembered as the Summer of Tudor? After the cancelation of Baselworld 2020, collectors assumed any new releases would be delayed until 2021, but Tudor’s given us a few things to look forward to during this unusual time. First, Tudor unveiled the Black Bay 58 in a new color. That got collectors wondering if some new releases might be headed our way. At the beginning of August, Tudor released the new 2020 Tudor Royal (Ref. M28600-0005). It’s a smaller release, limited to just 4 Asian markets: Hong Kong, China, Taiwan, and the Philippines. Still, the classically-styled reference with an integrated bracelet, day-date complication, and roman numeral indices has caught the eye of global collectors beyond the markets where it was released. Here are four things to note about the new 2020 Tudor Royal.
The Combo Bezel & Day-Date Dial
Although a fully-fluted bezel would look good on this watch, it would probably lean too closely to Rolex for comfort. On the 2020 Tudor Royal, Tudor employs a combination polished and fluted bezel, very similar in style to the bezels on its watches in the late 90s and early 2000s.
The dial utilizes serif Roman numeral indices for a throwback look that works. There are many different materials and colors for dial options, but Tudor seems to be highlighting a dark blue dial that ranges from navy to cerulean, depending on the lighting it’s photographed in. Each dial features baton hands, applied indices, and some diamond markers, which sparkle on a black dial or the mother-of-pearl dial options. The placing of the Day complication at the 12 is a traditional choice, and it sits nicely, although it does obscure the downstroke of the index at the 11 and at the 1. On a Rolex Day-Date dial, these indices are simplified to a single vertical line, which flanks the date for a more symmetrical and streamlined look.
The Integrated Bracelet and Case
It seems like Tudor used its own archives for inspiration, choosing a bracelet and case combination that feels distinctly retro. Specifically, the integration of bracelet and case in the 1967 Oyster Price Rager 7995/0 comes to mind, although the case framing the bezel is larger on the Tudor Royal. You might also catch some echoes of a Rolex Oysterquartz, a Seiko SNK063J5, or an Omega Constellation. Fans of integrated bracelet watches, rejoice. The bracelet is flush with the lugs and flows seamlessly into the case, framing the bezel and dial. The bracelet does feel Jubilee-esque, which is perfect for the integrated bracelet/case style.
Tudor keeps the sizing conservative, offering a 28mm, a 38 mm, and a 41 mm. The 41mm is the only size that offers the Day-Date complication. The Tudor best-known for a Day complication is the Tudor Glamour, a very different type of watch. It’s nice to see a Tudor with a Day complication on a sport watch, even if it’s on what Tudor diplomatically calls a “sport-chic” watch.
The ETA Movement & Calibre
Tudor uses ETA movements for the Tudor Royal instead of its in-house movement. This makes sense, considering the price point of the Royal starts at 2,000 and scales upwards from there, depending on the materials chosen. The 41 mm encases the ETA 2834, while the 38 and 34 mm use an ETA 2824. The smallest offering at 28 mm uses an ETA 2671. The ETA movement means a power reserve of 28 hours, rather than the 72-hour reserve you see with its in-house movement.
Will Scarcity = Increased Demand?
Tudor is keeping this release siloed in Asian markets, and importing charges could make getting one in Europe, America, or the UK just a little tricky. In fact, with an American or European IP address, you can’t view the info and specs page on Tudor’s website.This type of integrated bracelet does well in Asian markets, as Omega has proven with the success of the Constellation.This limited release may be a way of gauging wider global interest for the watch, while positioning it in markets where it’s most likely to do well. So will we see the Tudor Royal outside of Asia at some point? Only time will tell.
Written by Meghan Clark
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