Credit: Tudor

In what has been one of the worst kept secrets in horology, Tudor finally dropped their new Pelagos FXD.

This new Pelagos has revived Tudor’s 65-year-old link to the Marine Nationale (the French Navy). This FXD is a more specialised kind of Pelagos that has taken input directly from the Marine Nationale’s combat swimmers. The idea is to fine-tune the titanium dive watch to suit these swimmer’s needs for underwater navigation.

Credit: Tudor

When Rolex started modifying their Submariner for the British Armed Forces, Tudor began a similar project with the Marine Nationale. Tudor delivered many watches to the French Navy before they started supplying their own Submariner ref. 7016 in 1974 that featured the iconic engraving ‘M.N. 74’ on the caseback.

This engraving has appeared once again on the Pelagos FXD, but they’ve tweaked it slightly to ‘M.N. 21’. This isn’t the only thing they’ve changed.

What’s still the same is the case – still titanium, still 42mm. the difference is that it is thinner than the standard Pelagos, down from 14.3mm to 12.75mm. Tudor have removed the HeV (helium escape valve), and they’ve reduced the water resistance from 500m to 200m.

Why reduce the water resistance, isn’t it a dive watch? Yes, it is but it just isn’t really necessary for a watch like this to be capable of 500m. If you need something that can go down to 500m, you’re not really going to get a mechanical watch to do that but something a little more specialised and tool-like.

One of the things that might put people off is the fixed lug bars. What these mean for you it that you won’t be able to add your own bracelet, you have to stick to what Tudor are offering. Your options then are fabric, leather, or the original parachute elastic straps. This isn’t a complete deal breaker or anything, especially if you like what Tudor are offering, but it does remove a level of customisation.

Credit: Tudor

Let’s take a look at the dial. It’s standard Tudor fare and that’s no bad thing. The difference between this FXD and the standard Pelagos is the removal of the date window to give the dial greater symmetry.

This dial, it must be said, is beautiful. It isn’t anything flashy, but it is absolutely a simple design done incredibly well.

The bezel is just that little bit thicker than the standard Pelagos and it has countdown markings rather than dive time markings. None of these differences are likely to put any watch lovers off.

For power, Tudor have given us their in-house COSC-certified calibre MT5602 so reliability and toughness are here in spades. It features a non-magnetic silicon balance spring that is internal regulated to be accurate within -2 and +4 seconds per day. A power reserve of 70 hours isn’t too bad either.

If you love dive watches and don’t even plan on using it in the water, then this is for you. You can easily wear this without ever setting foot in the water.

It sells for $5,300 which is $950 less than the standard Pelagos.

These are available on Tudor’s website.