Tudor, who has made a spectacular comeback over the last few years, was the guest of our Review Corner with its highly praised model North Flag, powered with the brand’s first in-house movement Caliber Ref. MT5621.
After its comeback, Tudor succeeded in being the favorite brand of many watch enthusiasts by providing amazing models that were inspired by the past, making it one of the most talked-about brands in recent years, especially with its Heritage Collection. The brand, which possibly created the most successful examples regarding the Re-Issue concept that has been adopted by many companies in different segments, topped its popularity with the stunning Heritage Black Bay series.
While the Re-Issue concept was still trending, Tudor, who was aware of the fact that a strategy cannot be built over a product line limited to the brand’s Heritage only, shocked the watch aficionados by launching its modern looking and quite unique timepiece North Flag at Baselworld 2015.
What we have here, is the leather strap version of the North Flag, aka the first Tudor powered by the first in-house movement Caliber Ref.MT5621.
I had a chance to review the North Flag model before, but of course I did not have the time to spend a few days with the watch. The model, which I could not spend a lot of time with except one or two try outs on the wrist and a few photographs taken with my cell phone, featured an interesting dial design which was the most memorable feature of the watch. Now, I have a lot to say about the North Flag as I spent more than a week with it, thanks to the great support by Rhodium Turkey.
First of all, the case design is simply amazing. The 40mm diameter case features perfectly sharp edges which makes you think that the case has been designed in AutoCAD and laser cut by ultra-precision tools. As a watch enthusiast who care about the craftsmanship a lot, and slightly obsessed with symmetry, I really like the “engineered” look of the case.
“Tudor North Flag is a model that gives an idea of the brand’s future rather than telling about its present status.”
North Flag, which features some similarities with the 70s popular watch Tudor Ranger II, has in fact managed to make a design that is not up-to-date by itself, into a brilliantly modern identity with cleverly selected details. A balanced "tool watch" look was achieved by the black ceramic o-ringed thin and flat bezel, with brushed surface like the rest of the watch.
I can easily say that the caseback with a sapphire crystal display is the only thing which does not fit into such an industrial composition. However, it should not be forgotten that using a solid caseback would not be the best decision considering that this watch is the first Tudor with an in-house movement.
The case, which is rated WR100M, features sapphire crystals on both sides.
The dial ... The engineering we have seen through the case is still on the scale with the dial. The color palette, which initially recalls the "simple but functional" description, is pretty successful without being boring. Numbers and indexes with large, white-tinted finishes provide a clear image on the matte black surface. The yellow details, which distort the monochrome image in a balanced way and save the watch from the "military" routine, are also perfectly placed. Unlike the general use, the power reserve indicator, designed as a rotating disk instead of a pointer, has been both stylish and functional.
I can say that the date window at 3 o'clock is the only element that negatively affects the integrity of the dial. Though I normally do not like the date windows, I do not state that in my articles all the time as it is definitely a subjective idea. However, I do not understand the idea of using a date disc with a Xerox paper white background and black fonts. Obviously it will help the legibility but the opposite color scheme would certainly be a much more stylish image.
“The 40mm diameter case features perfectly sharp edges which makes you think that the case has been designed in AutoCAD and laser cut by ultra-precision tools.”
As I mentioned earlier, North Flag is the first model to beat with Tudor's first in-house movement Caliber Ref. MT5621. Tudor seems to have completed the last missing part of its fabulous comeback by manufacturing its own equipment. Tudor, which was well known with its production method of assembling Rolex supplied components with ETA movements, made a great achievement with that movement.
The new caliber has considerable technical features. Beating at 28800vph, the MT5621 offers an impressive power reserve of up to 70 hours when fully wound position. The movement that incorporates innovations such as a silicone hair spring and variable inertia screws comes with the COSC certification as well. As the in-house movement trend continues to rise at rocket speed, this caliber means a major development for Tudor, with its open structure to develop, which makes it possible for the brand to design different versions in the future.
Available with stainless steel and leather strap options, the subject of our review is North Flag's leather strap version. The contrasting yellow stitches on the strap match perfectly with the yellow details on the dial. The thickness of the strap is enough to provide a highly integrated image with the case. The strap is secured with a standard buckle made of brushed stainless. If we consider the simple yet functional design, it is possible to understand why a folding clasp is not preferred. There is not a negative to me for the strap, which I find quite satisfactory in terms of visual sense and comfort.
Tudor North Flag is a model that gives the wearer an idea of the brand’s future, rather than telling about its present status. I strongly recommend this special model, which is quite modern looking and unique, unlike the Heritage Black Bay (which is also an excellent model especially in terms of retro styling), to the watch enthusiasts who like to wear a watch that shows its identity but isn’t too flashy.
We sincerely thank to Rhodium Turkey for their usual support and cooperation.