One of my favourite places to go during Baselworld is Oris. The laid-back atmosphere – whilst being in the midst of chaos – is impressive in their booth and, just as important, they keep introducing interesting and attractively priced watches like this Oris Aquis GMT Date.
Just before I left for Baselworld, one of my friends ordered an Oris Aquis Date. Not per definition a watch guy (yet), but someone who likes to buy a good watch once in a while. I can see him slowly growing into becoming a watch collector, or at least as an enthusiast. The Oris Aquis is a great example of a watch that suits the needs of most people who are looking to buy that one good watch. An automatic movement, great water resistance, a bezel to play with and a few possibilities regarding the strap or bracelet. With a starting price of €1650,- you really can’t go wrong here. But, with 93 different references of the Oris Aquis, it might take you a while to take a decision.
This year, they presented to us their Oris Aquis GMT Date. A bit more expensive than the entry price of €1650,-, but it also comes with a few more features. Without further ado, let’s have a look into this one.
We did some reviews of the Oris Aquis in the past, like the Aquis Date 43.5mm here or the Aquis Staghorn Restoration LE we had with us on a diving trip in Florida. This Oris Aquis GMT Date adds a complication on top of the standard Aquis model, namely that of a timezone function. You will have local time (normal hour hand), home time (the GMT hand) and a third timezone by using the GMT bezel in combination with the GMT hand.
For the sake of clarity, the GMT hand on this Oris Aquis GMT Date can be set separately/independent. Some people favour the independent (local) hour hand though, so keep this in mind when you are in the market for a GMT watch. When you are travelling a lot and through different time zones, you might want to keep your GMT pointing to home time and just change the normal (independent) hour hand. With the Oris Aquis GMT Date, you will change the GMT hand independently from the normal hour and minute hands.
The GMT hand is being set by the crown, using the same position as the date corrector. One direction is for advancing the date, the other direction for setting the GMT hand.
The blue dial has this sunray finishing and the hands and hour markers have been applied with Super-LumiNova. As well as the marker in the bezel at ’24’. The bezel reminds me a bit of the Rolex GMT-Master II bezel, but clearly, the Oris has its own watch design. It looks neat though, although some people might have preferred one timezone less and a diving bezel on a watch with a water resistance of 300 meters. The GMT hand has a yellow triangle and the ‘GMT’ indication is also printed in yellow. The 24-hour ring on the dial gives the watch an interesting look, perhaps a bit more lively than the regular Aquis Date models. I don’t feel it is cluttered or too busy, Oris did a nice job here.
Oris uses their caliber 798 movement, which is based on the Sellita SW 330-1 caliber. It is the first time that Oris uses this Sellita caliber, as we’ve been told. As written above, the movement has a GMT complication on top of the time and date indicators. The date changes exactly at midnight and the movement also has a hacking feature. The typical Oris (red) rotor winds the movement in both directions and has a power reserve of 42 hours.
The case back bezel has some information engraved about the Oris, namely that it is water resistant to 300 meters (~ 30 bar), that it is Swiss made and some numbers that refer to the caliber number and watch reference number. Also, it indicates it has a sapphire crystal but this only applies to the crystal on the front. The crystal in the case back is mineral glass.
The diameter of the Oris Aquis GMT Date is 43.5mm, by no means a small watch but perfectly fine on my 18cm wrist. We didn’t measure the thickness of the watch, but it is quite a solid chunk of steel. As you can see on the photo below, the finishing of the case band is all brushed, including the crown guards. It gives the watch a proper tool watch appearance, which I like. On the crown, you’ll find the embossed Oris logo.
Oris makes their Aquis GMT Date available in several versions. The one I have here is the model on a blue rubber strap, but there’s also a black rubber strap, a brown leather strap and the solid stainless steel bracelet. The versions on a rubber or leather strap are all priced the same, but when you want to have it on the stainless steel bracelet it is a bit more expensive, at €2500,-. The leather strap version of the Oris Aquis GMT Date is my least favourite to be honest, although the leather did feel comfortable. It just doesn’t appeal that much to me, on a tool watch like this.
Both the rubber and leather strap comes with a folding clasp with diver’s extension. This is an easy-to-use system to make the watch fit properly, whether you are wearing a diving suit or just when you need to have a few more mm after a long day (or dinner). When you opt for the watch on a rubber strap, you will need to have it cut to the right size for you.
The Oris Aquis GMT Date looks a bit similar to their Barrier Reef limited edition III, because of the inner scale. On that limited edition, it was used to indicate the date and it had a small seconds hand. Also, the bezel on that watch has the 60-minute scale for divers. If a real divers watch is what you are after, perhaps that model is more suitable for you. If you like to have the combination of a divers watch and a GMT, the Oris Aquis GMT Date should be your pick.
There’s little not to like about this watch, but as I already wrote at the beginning of this article, there are so many Aquis models to choose from that you will probably be able to track down a version that is perfect for you. If you’re into the Aquis design, that is.
With a retail price of €2300,- for the Oris Aquis GMT Date on rubber (reference 01 798 7754 4135-07 4 24 65EB) or leather (reference 01 798 7754 4135-07 5 24 10EB) and €2500,- for the all stainless steel model (reference 01 798 7754 4135-07 8 24 05PEB), you are buying a handsome watch from Oris with great functionality. Just make sure that you are after a GMT with an independent GMT hand and not one with an independent hour hand.
More information can be found on the official Oris website.
Ever since he was a young child, Robert-Jan was drawn to watches, even though it were digital Casio and quartz Swatch models at the time. In the mid-1990s, his interest increased when he started to read about mechanical watches in... read more