All Hail the New Seiko Prospex “King Turtle” Refs. SRPE03, SRPE05, and SRPE07

Like the watch that inspired it, the current Seiko “Turtle” is a classic that’s beloved by watch-heads of all stripes, from those just getting into collecting to the very seasoned among us. And now, as we learned from our friends at Long Island Watch, Seiko is giving the Turtle a nice little upgrade in the form of three new models. Already dubbed “King Turtle” by Internet Watchdom, these new additions to the Turtle family feature some long-asked-for changes, some of which take the watch further away from its historical counterpart. That’s okay, though, because the changes make these watches look really good.

Seiko Prospex “King Turtle” Refs. SRPE03, SRPE05, and SRPE07

  • Case Material: Stainless steel; ceramic bezel insert
  • Dial: Black, Green, “Wave” Blue
  • Dimensions: 45mm x 13.3mm
  • Crystal: Sapphire with cyclops
  • Water Resistance: 200 meters
  • Movement: 4R36
  • Crown: Screw down
  • Strap/bracelet: Bracelet (SPRE03) or rubber (SPRE05 and SPRE07)
  • Price: SPRE03 $625; SPRE05 and SPRE07 $595
  • Reference Number: Refs. SRPE03, SRPE05, and SRPE07

So what do we have here? On the surface, much of the original DNA remains intact. Most notably, the iconic case is largely identical to its predecessor’s, and the general dial layout remains unchanged. But, the devil’s in the details, and the details here speak to a much more refined watch. 

The bezel features two upgrades. The insert is now ceramic, which I recall people asking for way back when the Turtle first hit the market, and the grip-able pattern along the bezel’s edge now features a harder, more angular groove pattern versus the softer one of the previous model. This gives the watch a slightly more modern, aggressive look, but I don’t think it looks out of place with the Turtle’s neo-vintage roots — it’s just different. Plus, the new design will surely offer a better grip underwater. 

Another notable upgrade is the crystal; it’s no longer Hardlex, but sapphire with a cyclops at 3:00. This is another feature I’ve seen people request in the past (well, the sapphire, not the cyclops). Personally, I’ve never had any issues with Hardlex. I’ve always found that it provides great optical clarity without much effort, whereas sapphire crystals often need some AR to keep things reflection-free. Nevertheless, one can’t deny the hard-wearing nature of sapphire, so I get why people want it.


The three references are as follows: SRPE03 (black bezel and dial), SRPE05 (black bezel and green dial), and SRPE07 (blue bezel and blue wave dial). The 03 and 05 feature a dial pattern that reminds me of the “Mega Tapisserie” dial of the Royal Oak Offshore, which I’ve always liked on a sportier watch. The seconds hand and “Diver’s 200m” are rendered in gold-tone on these two models, a nice accent to the otherwise subdued dials. The 07 features a wave pattern, not unlike the one from the Turtle that was part of the “Save the Ocean” collection.

Some great in-the-metal shots via Strapcode.
Image via Strapcode.

As far as pricing is concerned, the MSRP was given a small bump. The SPRE03 on bracelet is $625; and the SPRE05 and SPRE07 on rubber are $595. It’s a reasonable increase given the upgrades, and it’s still a good price for a proper tool watch. As of this writing, they’re sold out at Long Island Watch, but more are sure to trickle out sooner rather than latter, so be sure to keep an eye out.

Have thoughts on the “King Turtle?” Drop a comment below and let us know what you think about the change. 

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Ilya is Worn & Wound's Managing Editor and Video Producer. He believes that when it comes to watches, quality, simplicity and functionality are king. This may very well explain his love for German and military-inspired watches. In addition to watches, Ilya brings an encyclopedic knowledge of leather, denim and all things related to menswear.