The Vertex MP45 is a watch we’ve covered here on Worn & Wound for a few years now. The brand is perhaps best known among modern enthusiasts collectors as a member of the so-called “Dirty Dozen,” a maker of Ministry of Defense spec watches that were issued to military personnel in the World War II era. Those original Vertex W.W.W. (shorthand for “wrist, watch, waterproof”) watches are highly collectible because compared to the other firms charged with producing these watches, IWC and Omega among them, Vertex was quite small. The brand eventually shuttered, and like so many heritage brands has resurfaced in the era of the vintage reissue, and the MP45 could be considered something of a flagship for the brand. It combines an old school military look with one of our favorite complications: the monopusher chronograph.
Our own Brad Homes reviewed the MP45 back in 2019, so be sure to check out his analysis for detailed thoughts on the wearing experience. This new edition of the MP45, dubbed the Heritage, is the most overtly vintage inspired model yet, adding copious amounts of cream colored lume to the dial. Previous versions of the MP45 were actually fairly interesting modern interpretations of something that is deeply rooted in the 1940s: Vertex made a DLC coaated version with red accents, for example, as well as a variant with a crisp white dial. In a way, it’s a little surprising that a straight up vintage homage version hadn’t been made yet, but here we are.
One of the interesting quirks of the MP45 is that Vertex has traditionally made two versions of the watch available, one with a manually wound movement, the other automatic. This holds true for the Heritage as well, and is a choice that we wish more brands would offer (Nivada is another notable brand that frequently offers both options to customers). This effectively allows a user to decide if they want to purchase the MP45 as a daily driver, part of a larger rotation, or something in between based on the makeup of what’s already in someone’s watch box. When you’ve been around the watch world long enough, you inevitably have the experience of saying to yourself, “That watch should have a hand wound movement,” or “I’d wear this one a lot more if it were automatic.” Unless you’re inclined to suffer from analysis paralysis at checkout, offering a choice here is nothing but a positive development.
In terms of technical specs, Vertex uses the Sellita SW510 MP in both watches. This is a movement conceived as a monopusher from the start, and Sellita makes both automatic and hand wound versions of the caliber with the same model number. The diameter is 40mm regardless of the movement chosen, while thickness on the hand wound versions comes in at 15mm. The automatic caliber adds two millimeters to the case height, which could well put it into unwearable territory for some.
Pricing is set at £2,900 for either version, which translates to about $3,900 at the current exchange rate. It’s not an inexpensive watch, and there’s a lot of competition at this price point, but if you’re the type of collector that focuses on watch history and have been waiting for the ultimate vintage inspired interpretation of this particular watch, it’s quite a handsome package. It’s also a limited edition, with only 25 examples of each variant being made. More information at the Vertex website right here.