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More than a GMT: The Fortis Flieger F-43 Triple GMT

More than a GMT: The Fortis Flieger F-43 Triple GMT

As of late, and maybe it is just me, it seems that every independent brand needs a GMT in their lineup as a sort of "right of passage." Usually this addition of a GMT watch to the lineup means adding a GMT complication to one of the popular watches in a given brands line without much change to the overall design. Fortis has made a GMT watch that is truly mesmerizing. I've not seen anything like it. The Fortis F-43 Triple GMT is unashamedly a tool watch built to take on the rigors of everyday use. Wear it in the garage, take it camping, or wear it in a suite. This Fortis watch can do it all and does it well, but that is common. What makes the Triple GMT truly unique?

 



What is most interesting with the Triple-GMT is that Fortis didn't decide to make the F-39 or F-43 three-hand models a GMT by simply adding a GMT complication. They went not one or two but three steps further! The Fortis F-43 Triple GMT, as with all the Flieger watches in Fortis's line up takes a lot of its visual and aesthetic inspiration from the B-42 line of watches which are a staple in Fortis history. The orange accents, highly legible dial, and brutally straightforward external functions make this watch a true tool. The dial features the Berlac Flour Orange accents commonly found throughout the Flieger lineup. The Brixtracks indices feature Super Luminova X1, which shines bright and clear in the dark.



Fortis takes a refreshing approach to the GMT functionality by giving the Triple GMT a way to track three timezones rather than just one. The outer dial and hour markers allow you to follow your current time zones, while an inner dial with a short GMT hand follows a second time zone and the outer bezel will enable you to track a third time zone. When playing around with this watch while writing this review, I could think of many instances I would enjoy using this kind of functionality. For instance, I work and live in the ETD while most of my colleagues work in PTD time, and with partners such as Fortis in Gretchen, Switzerland or Leica Wetzlar Germany, I could engage with all three times zones in one watch. The Triple GMT would be my watch for a day with many zoom meetings from morning to night in many different time zones.

The WERK 13 GMT movement in the F-43 Triple GMT is made in conjunction with Tudor's child company, Kenissi. The WERK 13 movement is a step above in Fortis's lineup and one of the many things I've come to appreciate about what Fortis is doing with their line of watches. Watches such as the F-43 Triple GMT, M-44 Marinemaster, and S-41 Stratoliner feature the top-shelf Kenissi movement. In contrast, watches such as the F-39 and F-43 Fliegers and M-40 Marinemasters feature more attainable Salita or Valjoux-based movements.



Fortis made the deliberate decision to use a different material to make the F-43 Triple GMT. I wish I saw more watch brands doing this! It's not just the GMT function that makes the Triple GMT unique in the Flieger lineup; Fortis sought to take it one more step and make it an even more attractive offering by making the triple GMT in titanium. The F-43 Triple GMT is by no means a small watch. The case dimensions being 43mm in diameter and a lug to lug of 54.4 MM, this watch stands out, as it should! Even on the Fortis Block Bracelet, the F-43 GMT feels like half mass due to the Titanium construction.


The F-43 Triple GMT is stunning and might be the first GMT that has caught my eye. In a perfect world, this would be my travel watch, and I'd compliment it with the new Leica M-A Titan set with nothing but endless rolls of Tri-X to document my travels. One can dream, right? Bravo, Fortis, for making a GMT that isn't just a replication of one of your Fliegers or Dive watches but gives us a reason to enjoy this watch uniquely!

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