To gain master chronometer certification a movement must remain within a 5 second range of variation each day, and it must guarantee that accuracy while subjected to magnetic fields of 15,000 gauss. The movement is tested at two different temperatures, in six different positions, and at two levels of reserve: 100% and 33%. This is a legit achievement for the MT5602 and clues us into where they are heading with this movement. While I’ve all but given up on guessing what Tudor will release next, there’s a good chance we’ll see more use of the master chronometer given the fact that Tudor now has a dedicated lab for METAS testing and certification in their manufacturer.
Along with the performance upgrades, the MT5602-1U gets some visual improvements, as well. As exhibition casebacks seem to be the norm with Tudor these days, that’s a good thing. The bridges are matte black with laser etched details and the black tungsten oscillating weight has enough open spaces to view the action underneath. A full balance bridge supports the variable inertia balance with silicone hairspring beating away inside. Tudor lists additional “secret components” inside, so we’ll have to wait for a watchmaker’s perspective on further improvements. I am firmly in the camp that prefers closed casebacks on my tool watches but this is a pretty cool execution that has me re-thinking that position.
All told, this is a lot of watch for $4,725. Sure, it’s not what any of us were expecting, but the MT5602-1U is an exciting new step for the brand that will hopefully open new doors for future releases. The black ceramic case feels a bit on the fashion/luxury side of the line, which seems to be a direction Tudor wants to take, especially in light of the pair of precious metal 58 models just released, and their move to open casebacks. Until we see otherwise, this seems to be something of a transitionary period for Tudor. Whether that’s for better or worse remains to be seen, but I’m still holding out hope for the Marine Nationale partnership. Tudor.