The Ming 22.01 GMT may be your best shot at getting your hands on this hot independentRicardo Sime
I’m going to be honest with you. The appeal of independent watch brands has grown in my day-to-day involvement with this hobby. The chance of owning something unique, with a recognizable design language and quality construction gets harder and harder to say no to. Yet, with these brands currently at the forefront of watchmaking, the opportunity to own one of their pieces has become akin to winning the lottery. Which begs the question: how does a hungry collector get a crack at such a piece? Well, one of the hottest brands in this space is looking to raise the odds. Say hello to the Ming 22.01 GMT, your best chance thus far at adding one to the collection.
Before we delve into why this watch may make it to the last checkout screen, let’s breakdown what Ming is offering here. It’s been four years since the brand has released a GMT (the MING 17.03 GMT) and with air travel opening up, this marks the perfect time to tackle the complication again. Yet Ming 2022 is not Ming 2018, so their ever-evolving design language has to shine.
On the new Ming 22.01 GMT, we’re met with a 38mm grade 5 titanium case, instead of the grade 2 used in 2018. The choices in finishing also represent a perfect blend of old and new, with the polished features of the current 30 series and the industrial brushing of the 17 series. Water resistance is still a welcome 100 metres. And rounding out the measurements, we have a thickness of 10.7mm with a nice compact lug-to-lug of 43.9mm. All together, these design choices lead to a more lively yet still daily wearable watch.
Moving in from the case, Ming has decided to bless us with two dial versions. One features a green and silver mix while the other has a cyan colour with gilt GMT markings. And it’s here where the multi-layered construction of the dial makes the watch shine.
First there is a bottom layer, which is grained and has either a grey centre surrounded by a green chapter ring or a dark gold centre surrounded by a cyan chapter ring. Above that sits your first layer of sapphire glass. Here you’ll find the GMT marking and the cross hatch printed cleanly on top. Right above this sits, the bold MING hands and a colour-matched GMT Hand. The final layer of sapphire crystal comes next, with the hour markings printed on the underside. As you can see, there is much going on in these few millimetres of space. So when the light hits the dial(s), a lot of depth is created.
But if somehow, that is still not enough for you, the light show created by the Super-LumiNova X1 adds some more punch.
Powering this new GMT is the Ming Cal.330.M2. It’s a Selitta SW330-2 at it base, with a black circular grained finish and a skeletonized rotor. Which can be viewed through the sapphire crystal caseback. Spec wise, the movement beats at 28,800 bph and has 42 hour power reserve. The GMT function is of the caller variety meaning the 24 hand is what can be independently adjusted, not the hour hand.
To complete the package, MING is working with the strap maker Jean Rousseau. Each watch will be outfitted with their Barenia high quality calf-leather strap that tapers down from 20mm to 18 at the MING tuck buckle. It will come in either a forest green or tawny brown colour.
Overall, the new MING 22.01 GMT collection is a great release. If you like the MING aesthetic, these watches would be a great add. I know that line may have some of you chuckling as MING watches are notoriously difficult to purchase, with the brand making a few hundred per release. But this is where things get interesting. For this release, MING is making 300 of each version for existing customers. But if this will be your attempt at getting your first MING, 700 of each version will be available.
This is huge news and should better your odds of getting a watch throughout the four separate ordering windows MING will have for the 22.01. On the other hand, this also presents a huge litmus test for MING. It’s one thing for hundreds of “customers” to lament missing out on a release. But with this many watches to go around, will these same people pull the trigger?
We shall see!
The MING 22.01 GMT collection pricing and availability:
The MING 22.01 collection will be available as follows: orders for the green dial open on 10 March at 1pm GMT for existing customers, and 11 March at 1pm GMT for the general public. Orders for the gold dial open on 17 March at 1pm GMT for existing customers, and 18 March at 1pm GMT for the general public. Orders will be taken on the MING website. A 50% deposit of CHF 1625 secures the watch with the remaining CHF 1625 payment due before delivery.
Grade 5 Titanium
Multi Layered green/silver or cyan/gold
Barenia Leather 20mm x 18mm in either Tawny or Green
Cal. 330.M2 - Sellita SW330-2 base
Two layers of Sapphire on front and one layer on case back
Hour, Minute, GMT