INTRODUCING: This minty-fresh foursome celebrates the Seiko 140th Anniversary from a tough Seiko 5 to the technical tour de force of Astron. INTRODUCING: This minty-fresh foursome celebrates the Seiko 140th Anniversary from a tough Seiko 5 to the technical tour de force of Astron.

INTRODUCING: This minty-fresh foursome celebrates the Seiko 140th Anniversary from a tough Seiko 5 to the technical tour de force of Astron.

Thor Svaboe

It’s 140 years since Seiko founder Kintaro Hattori established his first watchmaking shop in Tokyo. To mark this occasion, the Seiko designers must’ve had a craving for menthol judging by the icy cool aesthetics of the Seiko 140th Anniversary collection.

Seiko 140th Anniversary

Seiko 5 Sports 140th Anniversary Limited Edition SRPG47K1

Seiko 140th Anniversary

Let’s kick off with the most accessible piece, a sharp Seiko 5 Sports. I sincerely feel that we now can count the 5 as the proper heir  to the SKX throne with a bewildering array of colourful editions available (like the ones covered in our story here or this mad batch of Anime-infused fun). There are 11,000 of these new pieces available, but I’d still get my skates on, as this is seriously fresh. Despite its 100 metre depth rating, the lack of a screw-in crown makes this more Sports than Diver, but a bulletproof everyday wearer nonetheless. The classic Seiko bright blue diver’s hands pop off the crisp white pattern on a balanced dial that’s one of the cleanest Seiko 5 designs yet. The laser-like lume glow and needle thin blue lollipop seconds hand are sharp finishing touches to a great first mechanical sports watch. You can’t really go wrong with one of these. Price: $550 AUD

Seiko Prospex 140th Anniversary Limited Edition SPB213J1

Seiko 140th Anniversary

Like a breath of arctic air blowing in from my Oslo neighbourhood below the North Pole, here’s a welcome change of look for the very successful modern re-interpretation of the 62MAS. This was a series we couldn’t get enough of last year with the Seiko Prospex SPB143, SPB145 and gilt SPB147. By succumbing to public demand and going just below 40mm in this SPB series, Seiko created what to many was the best value skin diver-inspired wristpiece of 2020. The oyster-style bracelet is simple in its design but just right for the tool vibe of the SPB213J1, here in its extra fresh version. The pure ’60s vibe of large applied indices that’ll light up like miniature Japanese lanterns through the science of Lumibrite, makes for an eminently legible dial.  The bold sword hands are proportionate time-telling tools while a crisp blue square-end lollipop seconds hand is a perfect compliment to the diver’s bezel. A decent run of 6000 pieces means that there’s a good chance you could pick up this square lugged throwback when it comes out in May. Price: $1895 AUD


Seiko Presage GMT 140th Anniversary Limited Edition SPB223J1

Seiko 140th Anniversary

We’ve just covered what feels like a great value GMT in the three new Presage models here. With this blue and white version, the  hemp leaf pattern on the structured dial works even better, like crisp white origami paper framed by the dark blue bezel. The small blue accents and large GMT arrow pop off the white background while the day/night indication on the two tone rehaut offers balanced graphics on a seemingly busy dial. With a super-hard coating on the baby-Grand Seiko angular case, the automatic GMT with its 6R64 caliber is a great every day sports watch. It might even be one of the best value GMTs out there for the price, with case details that punch several weight classes above its level (as usual for Seiko). It’s not a small watch at 42.2mm, but surely the intricate dial art deserves a decent canvas? Only 3500 will be produced of these 140th anniversary Presage GMTs, so make a note of it if you need a sharp travel companion this year. Price: $2150 AUD

Seiko Astron 140th Anniversary Limited Edition SSH093J1

Seiko 140th Anniversary

I do have an affinity for the brawn and brains of the larger cased Astron series. This is the high-tech tour de force in the Prospex range with the über-accurate 5X53 solar calibre set to beat every other Seiko for accuracy. Suffice to say the spec list runs as long as me scrolling for a good five seconds so I’ll just bamboozle you with the highlights. If you’re used to a COSC +/- 5-10 seconds a day, knock yourself out with +/- 15 secs a month, and that’s without receiving its GPS signal. With GPS don’t even ask. The perpetual calendar is set to the year 2100 and the double-domed sapphire crystal protects a detailed dial with one of the best versions of the blue and white colour choice in this foursome. Twin time zones are presented with the second on a delicate white sub dial at 6 and the rest on a smooth expanse of silvery perfection. With the broad sword and arrow Astron hand set dominating the clean background, the elegant blue chapter rings for the registers at 3 and 9 gives a clean bicompax look, matching in colour to the smooth decorative bezel. This is not small at a tad over 42mm, but with its super-smooth duo colour design it does the trick of being dynamic in shape, muscular yet elegant in its arctic cool. There are only 1400 in this edition of the silvery white dial Astron, so if you fancy the set-and-forget accuracy of Seiko’s satellite-controlled marvel you better be quick. Price: $3300 AUD