Lately it seems like Seiko has really been stepping things up with the Seiko 5 Sports line they refreshed in 2019. We’ve gotten GMTs, new divers, and what seems like an endless flood of variety. That’s a good thing when I think of Seiko 5. Now Seiko has announced a new limited 1968 re-edition along with a set of three “tributes” to 1969 collection. While I usually find some fault with the way Seiko does their tributes or reinterpretations, I have to say these all look great upon first glance.
The new Seiko 5 SRPK17 serves as a faithful recreation of the original 1968 reference 6106-8120. We even get the old Seiko 5 logo at 12 o’clock and this makes me wonder if we’ve seen this approach taken with a Seiko 5 since the 2019 refresh. As it was in 1968, the case is 39.5mm. Lug to lug span is 43.1mm with a case thickness of 12.5mm. This C-type case feels about as late-60s-Seiko as it gets and at a 20mm lug width, the bracelet also appears vintage-accurate and well integrated with the case. Water resistance is improved, now at 100m.
Like we’re seeing with most of the new Seiko 5 watches, this reissue and the tributes come with the 4R36 movement and a hardlex crystal. Also it may just be how the photos were done but the printing on the SRPK17 bezel looks super crisp and matches so well with the grey and blue tones you get on the dial. I admittedly don’t know much about the original 6106-8120 but this reissue is making me want to learn more about it. To me it looks like Seiko nailed one of their best 1:1 recreation attempts in a long time. This one will be “limited” to 15,555 pieces and Seiko has priced them at €410.
Then come the Seiko 5 tributes to 1969; the SRPK09, SRPK11, and SRPK13. Each one corresponds with a specific vintage model. The silver dial SRPK09 takes cues (especially the bezel) from the Seiko 5126-8130 “Rally Diver”; the orange SRPK11 with Seiko’s 5126-6030 “Double Hurricane”; and the multi-colored SRPK13 with the Seiko 6119-6050 “Regatta.” All of these new tributes use the new and now familiar Seiko 5 Sports 42.5mm × 13.4mm case and a 4R36 movement. All of them are priced at €350.
Overall I have to say that this is one of the more well-executed reissue + reinterpretation releases I’ve seen from Seiko recently. Sometimes pricing gets out of hand the more “vintage-correct” the watches are. But I think pricing across the board is reasonable and there’s something here for everyone. You can find out more about the Seiko 5 Sports 55th Anniversary Models on the official Seiko 5 site.
Michael Peñate is an American writer, photographer, and podcaster based in Seattle, Washington. His work typically focuses on the passage of time and the tools we use to connect with that very journey. From aviation to music and travel, his interests span a multitude of disciplines that often intersect with the world of watches – and the obsessive culture behind collecting them.