Say what you will, but there are few cooler mods you can make to a stainless steel sports watch than removing its bezel … just ask Marlon Brando. It’s obviously a sentiment that Seiko agrees with, as 2020 has seen them release no fewer than 11 new iterations of its iconic 5 Sports model without the uni-directional, ratcheting diver’s bezel. And the response? Rescapement calls them “The most important [watch] of 2020.”
Seiko has replaced the functional feature with a brushed, fixed bezel with a highly polished outer lip. To our eyes, this seemingly innocuous move has completely changed the overall character of the watch – it now looks much more akin to something like a field/daily timepiece, rather than a watch geared towards marine activity.
However, it isn’t the only change that these new 5 Sports bring. They’ve also shrunk from 42.5mm to just 40mm. Hallelujah. That means even more bandwidth, and for smaller-wristed fellows like myself, a much more attractive proposition.
The bezel-less beauties will be made available in a number of distinct finishes, including brushed stainless steel, two-tone steel and yellow gold or pink gold or a fully blacked-out variant with a hardened coating (which looks seriously tough).
Depending on which model you choose, the new watches will come equipped with either a scaled-down, tapered stainless steel or two-tone stainless steel bracelet, or a NATO strap.
Aside from these two big changes, it’s business as usual for the new 5 Sports. That means the same day-date aperture located at three o’clock, same 100 metres of water resistance, same push/pull crown at four o’clock and the same Calibre 4R36 movement.
There’s no word yet from Seiko as to when these new, smaller models will be available in Australia, nor is there any concrete info surrounding their recommended retail price, but, as is the case with all of these Seiko 5s, they will no doubt be a value proposition of the highest order.