The Black Bay is, without doubt, the most successful collection of cheap fake Tudor. This watch has been instrumental in the resurrection of the brand in the early 2010s. Since its introduction in 2012, this vintage-inspired diver’s watch has been a commercial hit and the collection has been enlarged with multiple complications, in various materials and in a wide range of colours. The collection is a classic for Tudor, mixing modern execution and retro-looking elements, such as the iconic Snowflake hands or signature applied indexes. And in 2017, the brand introduced its first Black Bay Chrono, which caused quite some reactions… A good base for sure, but there was room for improvement. Well, it’s here, with the new editions of the high quality copy Tudor Black Bay Chrono for 2021. And we have a video review of these models too, that you can check on top of the article.
THE BLACK BAY CHRONO… A CONTROVERSIAL PIECE IN A SUCCESS STORY
The Black Bay is like a piece of well-oiled machinery for Tudor. One edition after another, its road is paved with success. And even though the recipe is well-known and the evolutions are most of the time quite conservative – not always, as seen with the 925 Silver edition – it remains the brand’s best-selling collection, by far. But, from time to time, one of the version can cause some discussions.
In 2017, Tudor launched a chronograph based on the Black Bay. Not the first chronograph of the brand, which already has in collection racing-inspired models such as the Heritage Chrono, based on the Montecarlo. So, in order to differentiate this new black dial copy Tudor Black Bay Chrono from the rest of the crowd, Tudor gave it the Black Bay touch with some diving credentials – both in terms of design and specifications. Also, and importantly, this watch marked the beginning of an industrial alliance between Tudor and Breitling, as the movement found in the Black Bay Chrono was (and still is) openly presented as based on a B01 architecture. Nothing wrong with this. Actually, it is something we even applauded back then.
The issue was somewhere else. What caused discussions was the strange mix between diving elements of the Black Bay – the dial, its indexes and the Snowflake hands – and racing features such as the chronograph (even though diving chronographs are far from new) and the tachymeter scale on the bezel. The Snowflake hand, and the way it could obstruct the 45-minute counter even cause strong reactions… More on that later.
All in all, the first generation of stainless steel case replica Tudor Black Bay Chrono had some strong arguments, was a solid base but still was perfectible on some aspects – some of which were totally subjective. A couple of years later, the brand launched a black-coated version, the Dark Limited Edition. Finally, there was also in 2019 a two-tone version of this chronograph, which was somehow announcing the evolution that has been introduced this year, with a black bezel and contrasting sub-counters.