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This article was originally published at MoT’s Watch Deal Forum on October 30, 2019.

Timex has a long history of mechanical wristwatches that dates back to the first World War.

Within the last year or so, Timex has once again started to offer hand-wound and automatic watches, often dipping into their historical catalog for inspiration. The re-introduced Marlin in both hand-wound and automatic, as well as automatics in the Waterbury line, and the American Documents quickly come to mind.

Today I am giving a quick (but picture-heavy) review of Timex’s newest automatic, the Navi XL Automatic.

Timex Navi XL on the wrist.

The watch is delivered in a white outer box that holds a black, Timex signed inner box. Inside that is a “leather” hinged box that contains the watch. Pretty nice packaging and the padded inner box will be a nice place to keep and display Navi XL.

A “diver-inspired” watch coming in at 41mm (~45mm with crown), this piece certainly has that vintage look. The lightly brushed stainless steel case contains a Miyota sourced 21-jewel movement that hand-winds, but does not hack. A white date wheel can be quick-set by the usual method of pulling the crown to the first click and rotating. The movement is placed in front of a screw-down display back that has text denoting the watch is part of Timex’s “Allied Collection”. The case is topped by a 120-click uni-directional bezel that has crisp action, with a very satisfying audible and tactile click that will please the fidgeters out there. Best of all, there is no lash, and the alignment is spot on.

Timex Navi XL Automatic
Display case back showing the Miyota sourced automatic movement.

The crown is unsigned and is push-pull, but neither, in my opinion, are deal-breakers. The watch is rated for 100m of water resistance which is acceptable given the specs, and should be more than suitable for splashing around.

Nice side profile, unsigned crown.

The dial is listed as green, and is, but is very hard to photograph. It sits behind a mineral glass crystal (acrylic may have been more appropriate for the vintage theme, or sapphire for the price-point) with a pretty inoffensive cyclops that does an adequate job of magnifying the date.

Full view showing the comfortable leather strap.

Large raised hour markers along with printed a printed 24-hour track encircle the dial. Text is kept to a minimum, a choice I really like. A lollipop seconds hand revolves around the watch, reaching all the way to the edge of the dial. A nice touch. The sword-shaped minute hand is shaped nicely, and the real eye-catcher is the unique hour hand with what I like to call a “peephole” that aligns with the 24-hour track. All three hands are edged in silver, and the hands, as well as the markers and hour pips, are lumed.

Initially strong, the lume fades fairly quickly. Barely perceptible by morning.

The strap Timex has paired with Navi XL is produced by S.B. Foot Tanning Company, the same group that produces Red Wing shoes. It is a handsome tan color, is fairly soft, and has a wonderful leather smell. It’s also appropriately large enough for those of us with wrists reaching 8″ and above, but just. The watch is secured to your wrist with a signed buckle and one stationary and one floating keeper.

Signed stainless steel buckle.

In conclusion, Navi XL Automatic is a good-looking, well-built watch that is more than the sum of its parts.

the list price of $259 may seem dear considering the specs, but if you’re a fan of Timex and what they have been doing as of late, it really isn’t that steep. Fortunately, Timex is on a hot streak with their other mechanical/automatic watches and the Q reissue. Given that, the overall packaging and quality of the watch make the purchase palatable. (Plus there are always coupons you can apply to purchase. 😉 )

Thanks for reading, and if there are any questions, I’ll do my best to answer them.

By MoT

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