The Watches & Wonders 2022 show just wrapped up, where for the first time in two years, watch industry insiders congregated in person at the Palexpo convention center in Geneva, Switzerland. Over the last week, some of the world’s biggest watch brands unveiled their new timepieces for 2022. With almost 40 brands present, there were plenty of new watches to see, try on, and discuss.
Now that the dust has settled and the doors have closed until next year, here is a look at the top new releases from Watches & Wonders 2022 that everyone is talking about.
Rolex GMT-Master II
Price: $11,050 – $11,250
If Rolex is present at a watch show, you can be sure the Swiss watchmaking giant will have the most talked-about release of the event — and this year was no different. While many enthusiasts had their predictions on what Rolex would release in 2022 (new Milgauss, anyone?), no one saw the GMT-Master II ref. 126720VTNR coming.
So, what makes this new steel Rolex GMT-Master (available with either a Jubilee or Oyster steel bracelet) so different from the others that came before it? Well, for one it has a never-before-seen Rolex Cerachrom green and black bezel. However, even more surprising, is that it has the crown and date on the left-hand side! This “Lefty” (also known as destro) GMT-Master II was developed for left-handed people who prefer to wear their watches on the right wrist — yet, we guarantee that right-handed people who wear their watches on the left hand will also line up for this hot new Rolex watch.
Tudor Black Bay Pro
Price: $3,675 – $4,000
Tudor also got people talking at Watches & Wonders with the release of the all-new Black Bay Pro. Fans of Rolex will immediately recognize the similarities between the fresh Tudor Black Bay Pro and the vintage Rolex Explorer II ref. 1655 from the 1970s/1980s. Featuring a 39mm steel case, 24-hour engraved steel bezel, and matte black domed dial with a bright yellow 24-hour hand, the Tudor Black Bay Pro GMT watch is already a fan favorite. What’s more, it’s a “true” GMT (thanks to the in-house MT5652 automatic movement), meaning that has a local jumping hour hand for easy time adjusting when flying to a new time zone.
In true Tudor fashion, the new Black Bay Pro is available with a matching steel bracelet, a fabric NATO-like strap, or a hybrid rubber and leather strap. However, since the watch has a lug width of 20mm, it can easily become a strap monster.
Grand Seiko Spring Drive Diver
To mark its first time attending a Watches & Wonders event, Grand Seiko went big and unveiled a new Evolution 9 Sport watch collection. Home to five new Grand Seiko watch models, the Evolution 9 Sport collection borrows the Evolution design language from the GS Elegance collection and applies it to sportier numbers like GMTs, GMT chronographs, and divers.
One of the standouts is the Grand Seiko Evolution 9 SLGA015 Spring Drive Dive watch, crafted from high-intensity titanium and featuring a striking “Black Stream” patterned dial. The 200-meter water-resistant case measures 43.8mm and underneath the hood is the Spring Drive Caliber 9RA5, which boasts five days (120 hours) of power reserve and an accuracy rating of ±10 seconds per month.
Oris ProPilot X Calibre 400
Though Oris is very good at making vintage-inspired watches, the ProPilot X line is undeniably modern (even futuristic) in style with angular surfaces and sleek finishes. For 2022, Oris debuted the ProPilot X Caliber 400 range, which is a collection of 39mm time and date watches in titanium. The watches are paired with integrated titanium bracelets and are available in three dial colorways: salmon, blue, and gray.
While these awesome new Oris watches aren’t traditional Pilot watches (such as those with large Arabic numerals and oversized hands) they do still include aviation-inspired details. There’s the oversized winding crown, legible hands, and textured bezel designed after jet engine fan blades. The new ProPilot X watches run on the in-house Caliber 400 movement, which Oris released back in 2020. Not only does it supply the watches with an impressive five-day power reserve thanks to two mainspring barrels but it also boasts antimagnetic components and a slide-bearing system to reduce wear and tear.
Vacheron Constantin Les Historiques 222
With 1970’s icons like the Patek Philippe Nautilus and Audemars Piguet Royal Oak dominating the luxury sports watch field, it was only a matter of time before Vacheron Constantin also reissued its seventies sports model to a new generation. And the new Les Historiques 222 that launched at Watches and Wonders 2022 is it.
The original Vacheron Constantin 222 came out in 1977 and was in production for about seven years. It’s estimated that only 750 of these 222 models were made, spread across steel, yellow gold, and two-tone variants. For 2022, Vacheron Constantin released a new iteration of the yellow gold 222 that faithfully honors the original model, complete with the signature hexagonal-link integrated bracelet, grooved bezel, 37mm tonneau-shaped case, and Maltese cross at 5 o’clock. What is different in the newer version is the movement, which is the self-winding Vacheron Caliber 2455/2 that can be viewed via the sapphire exhibition caseback.
TAG Heuer Aquaracer Professional 1000 Superdiver
Although TAG Heuer turned heads with its wild (and one-off) Carrera Plasma Tourbillon Nanograph it’s the newly launched Aquaracer Professional 1000 Superdiver that will no doubt become a strong part of the brand’s current catalog.
With a mega 45mm case, bi-color black and orange ceramic octagonal bezel, and hefty crown protector, the Aquaracer Professional 1000 Superdiver is not for the faint of heart. However, TAG keeps things lighter by using titanium for the case and bracelet. There’s a helium escape valve on this 1,000-meter ISO-rated saturation diver and plenty of ultra-bright Super-LumiNova X1 for maximum visibility in low–light. To power the new Aquaracer Professional 1000 Superdiver, TAG Heuer turned to movement manufacturer Kenissi to build the Caliber TH30-00 automatic movement with a 70-hour power reserve.
Those are six of our picks for the top releases from Watches & Watches 2022. How about you? Did you have any favorites from the show and will you likely buy any of them once they hit stores this year? Let’s keep the discussion going in the comments below.