Last year, Grand Seiko unveiled a trio of Spring Drive GMT Sport models. Refs. SBGE253, SBGE255, and SBGE257 bring together Grand Seiko’s proprietary movement and a classic sport watch design, growing the number of available options in the Sport collection that have both a Spring Drive movement and a GMT complication.
Prior to this release, watches in the Sport Collection with this feature-set included the SBGE201 and its variants, and Grand Seiko’s chronographs (currently all of Grand Seiko’s Spring Drive chronographs have a GMT complication). With those watches starting at 43.5mm and growing larger from there, this series, measuring 40.5mm in diameter, offers a smaller-sized option.
There are three distinct references in this collection: SBGE253 (black dial and bezel with a red GMT hand), SBGE255 (blue dial and bezel with a light-blue GMT hand), and SBGE257 (green dial and bezel with a gold-tone GMT hand).
The detail that immediately catches the eye on all three is the bezel, fixed in place and rendered in scratch-resistant ceramic that’s been color-matched to the dial. A 24-hour scale marks the bezel in bold lettering, offering a highly legible way to track a second time zone.
The hands and dial indexes are beautifully finished, and feature ample Lumibrite paint for excellent nighttime visibility. Further adding to that legibility is the finish of the hands. Across all three watches, the top surface of the hour and minute hands feature hairline finishing. There is a reason for this. Due to their highly reflective nature, polished hands can get lost against darker dials, but hands with a hairline finish don’t, instead offering contrast against darker surfaces. With legibility being fundamental for Grand Seiko, this stays true to the brand’s design philosophy.
There is a discreet date window in place of an index at four o’clock, and, like most of Grand Seiko’s Spring Drive watches, there’s a power reserve indicator on the dial positioned near nine o’clock.
The ceramic bezel sits on a stainless steel case that measures 40.5mm in diameter, 14.7mm in thickness, and 48.7mm in length. The lug width is 20mm. An offset, screw-down crown at four o’clock helps keep the watch comfortable on the wrist, and 20 bar of water resistance means that this collection is versatile all-around. The case features a mix of hairline and Zaratsu-polished surfaces, accentuating the ergonomic geometry of the design. Around back is a solid, screw-down case back.
All three watches are powered by Grand Seiko’s Spring Drive Caliber 9R66. This is a true GMT movement, which means that the local hour hand is independently adjustable while the GMT hand remains fixed to “home” time.
The benefit of such functionality is that upon arriving to a new locale in a different time zone, the wearer can simply jump the hour hand to the appropriate hour without having to reset the watch. With the 9R66 being rated to an incredible accuracy of +/-15 seconds a month, not having to reset the time allows the wearer to enjoy this unmatched precision.
All versions are mounted on a stainless steel bracelet with half-links and a signed clasp featuring points of micro-adjust for dialing in the fit. The bracelet provides a good balance for the head of the watch, which means that it will sit comfortably on the wrist when worn.
Case: Stainless Steel/Ceramic Bezel
Dimensions: 40.5mm diameter x 14.7mm thickness x 48.7mm length
Movement: Spring Drive Automatic GMT 9R66
Availability: Grand Seiko Boutiques, Salons, and Mastershops