The Tudor Black Bay 58 (M79030B) is a new addition to the Tudor Black Bay 58 lineup, originally released in 2018. The blue version features a blue dial and bezel and silver applied indices, white lume spots and white minute track and lettering. It maintains the original Black Bay 58’s 39mm case, in house Calibre MT5402 self-winding movement with a 70 hour power reserve, 200 meter water resistance and a domed sapphire crystal. Per Tudor’s website, the MSRP is . . .
Despite initially selling at 22 percent above MSRP on the secondary market, its market price has begun trending down and now only sells at five percent higher than MSRP.
What do you think about the Tudor Black Bay 58? Do you think market value will continue to come down? Where will the price settle?
To answer young Master Charles: I like it a lot, yes, and the Black Bay 58’s pre-owned price will eventually settle at roughly 20 percent below retail. At some point. To understand the “price crash” past, present and future, we need to see this timepiece in context . . .
The Black Bay 58 took Tudor to another level. Its size (especially thinness) and in-house caliber (developed with Breitling) elevated the watch and the brand to new heights of desirability. My review awarded the watch five out of five stars: “Tudor now has its own Submariner: a beautifully built dive watch that will never go out of style.”
Not everyone on staff agreed. And if we go by the Black Bay 58’s declining pre-owned values, my summation was premature. Or was it? When a pre-owned watch sells for more than a new one – even if it’s by “just” five percent – it’s hardly a drug on the market.
That said, Charles’ analysis is for the blue dial diver, rather than the dark dial version. I’m not sure whether the first Black Bay 58 out of the gate is holding up so well, or so badly. But I’ll say this about that: it’s too early to tell the “real” sustained value of either watch. Get back to me in five years.
I’ll also add that Tudor’s decision to introduce the new Royal – a $2500 Rolex Day-Date knock-off – did neither the brand nor the Black Bay 58’s resale value any favors. Whereas the 58 went a long way to establishing Tudor as its own man, the Royal returns the brand to its original remit: a Rolex wannabe for people who can’t afford a Rolex.
The Black Bay 58 was a “gotta-have” watch for a pretty long stretch. While I continue to admire its capabilities and economy of scale, I still think the blue dial Tudor Black Bay 41 is the one – a minimalist masterpiece that’s as legible as it is liveable.
The Black Bay 41 on a steel bracelet costs $3050 new, $650 less than the Black Bay 38. You sacrifice 50m of water resistance (150m vs. 200m) and in-house caliber bragging rights. Then again, so what, and the 41’s ETA Caliber 2824 is an easily serviced, time-tested workhorse.
In my opinion, the 41 is a far more elegant and versatile timepiece than the 58. The 41’s a classic watch that will never go out of style. Oh wait. I said about the 58 . . .
Anyway, the market has spoken. The Black Bay 58 is holding its value, while you can pick up a mint 2019 blue dial Tudor Black Bay 41 with box and papers from chrono24.com for $2250 (no commission on link).
The lesson here: if you chase the latest “it” watch, you’re going to have to pay for the privilege. But if you manage to snag one at retail, chances are you won’t get badly hurt getting out of it – as long as you do so sooner rather than later.
For a lot of us, that’s an odd way to “own” a watch. The better strategy: buy a watch you love for its own sake and don’t worry about resale.
If you want to save money, wait and buy pre-owned. How long you have to wait is a variable, but in the vast majority of cases, it’s not a case of if the price will come down, but when, and by how much. Watchcharts.com is your guide.