Best Grand Seiko Sport Watches

  • by

Best Grand Seiko offers timepieces of distinction for all. Whether classic, traditional or for sport, every Grand Seiko offers the same high standards of precision, durability and legibility that are its hallmarks.

We measured the reading and clicking behavior from May 2019 till now. The result? A list of the Top 10 Grand Seikos according to you, the Fratelli. Best Grand Seiko made big steps in the last few years. And with every new release, the brand figured out new ways to surprise us. Besides the unmatched dial and hands finishing, the cases are simply to die for. Zaratsu polishing for example, has become a standard. Only a few years ago, nobody except a few enthusiasts had heard about this. Due to the efforts that Grand Seiko took to create more worldwide awareness, the brand’s watches have become the enthusiasts’ darling.

Grand Seiko “Snowflake” SBGA211
No surprises here. This is Grand Seiko’s top-seller and most hailed model from its collection, the “Snowflake”. It took me quite a while to realize that this is not the watch I was after. I am not a fan of titanium and I wanted to have the 44GS style case. But the “Snowflake” dial is a winner for sure! It features the Spring Drive caliber that comes with a small power reserve indicator on the dial. The dial is the main attraction of this watch, I am sure. A beautiful “snowflake” pattern that has a soothing effect every time you look at it. Click here for our article on the Grand Seiko “Snowflake” SBGA211.
Grand Seiko ‘Mt. Iwate’ SBGJ201
It took me over a year to make a choice on my first Grand Seiko. I already know it is not going to be my last, but the first one should be special. I spent a lot of time researching the case design and hi-beat history, and this reference is the result. The Grand Seiko SBGJ201 or “Mt. Iwate”. The dial motif comes from the mountain that Grand Seiko’s watchmakers are able to admire from their watchmaking benches. Click here to read about the SBGJ201 “Mt. Iwate” Grand Seiko.
Grand Seiko “Skyflake” SBGA407
On some days, the snow on the mountains has this blue tone in it due to the color of the sky. The “Skyflake” dial was born, and Grand Seiko decided to put it in a somewhat more classic design case. It is all a matter of taste and preference, but the blue dial looks pretty stunning to us. And to you, as it was the Grand Seiko reference with the third most reads on Fratello. Click here for the article on the SBGA407.
Grand Seiko GMT SBGN005
It is quartz, but you love it anyway. The Grand Seiko SBGN005 with GMT. The perfect travel companion’s complication. We recently put this watch against the Rolex Explorer II in our Sunday Morning Showdown column that relies on YOUR votes to work. This quartz-powered GMT almost took down the Explorer. Quite amazing! The Grand Seiko fan base is immense. Click here to read our article on the SBGN005.
Grand Seiko SBGY003
The title of our hands-on review of the Grand Seiko SBGY003 said it all: “The Never-Ending Flow of Amazing Dials”. This SBGY003 is part of Grand Seiko’s Elegance collection, and it is über stylish. Powered by their Spring Drive 9R31 movement. The cool thing, in my opinion, is that it doesn’t have the PR indicator on the dial. It keeps the watch very clean and serene. Instead, you will find the PR indicator on the movement, visible through the sapphire crystal case back. Click here for our hands-on review of the SBGY003.
Grand Seiko SBGR311
Another stunning dial is the brown one in this SBGR311 model. A limited-edition of 1,300 pieces introduced in 2018. Our hands-on review of this watch still performs amazingly well, even after this long. The article we did on this watch is worth reading, as we included the servicing prices for Grand Seiko and did a macro photo comparison of Grand Seiko and a few other brands. Click here for our article on the Grand Seiko SBGR311.
Grand Seiko SBGA373G
While not being convinced at first, the fact that Grand Seiko combined their 44GS style case and a Spring Drive movement made us want it. The dial can come across as a bit boring compared to all the “flakes” and “Mt. Iwates” out there, but it does have a cool sunburst effect. We show this in one of the first proper YouTube videos we made for Fratello, you can watch it here (and there are more on there as well). Click here for our hands-on review of the Grand Seiko SBGR373G.
Grand Seiko “Silver Blizzard” SBGE249
Another incredible dial variation is the “Silver Blizzard”. We reviewed this stainless steel SBGE249 last year. A limited-edition that Grand Seiko did together with one of their authorized dealers (Timeless) from Texas, USA. Only 250 pieces and the design is simply jaw-dropping. They combined the Spring Drive GMT caliber 9R66 with a stainless steel case and the beautiful “blizzard” dial. As far as we know, Timeless in Texas still has a few in stock. You can read our hands-on review of this SBGE249 here.
Grand Seiko SBGA231
Finally, the first sports watch hits #9 in our Top 10 Grand Seiko overview. It is the SBGA231 diver, a titanium “Submariner” killer. The steel version (SBGA229) retails for a much friendlier price and would be our pick, but professional divers (or fans) might think otherwise. Grand Seiko did a lot of good things with this watch, but unfortunately the diver’s extension in the clasp is not one of them. I hope this will be updated soon. Our in-depth review of this Grand Seiko SBGA231 can be found here.
Grand Seiko SBGH281
One of the first new watches introduced in 2020 is this Grand Seiko SBGH281. It commemorates the 60th anniversary of Grand Seiko. The brand introduced four new watches (one ladies’ watch) and this SBGH281 was our favorite of the bunch. And yours as well, based on the views. It ended on the tenth spot in our Top 10 Grand Seiko overview. Limited to just 1,500 pieces and is Rob’s “star of the show”. Inside, there’s caliber 9S85 housed in the 44GS style case. Click here to read about the Grand Seiko SBGH281.

We will soon come up with our editor’s picks on their favorite Grand Seiko watches. Meanwhile, let us know what your favorite Grand Seiko models are in the comments below.