New Watch: Grand Seiko "Yuka Momiji" SBGJ273 Red Dial Traveller GMT
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New Watch: Grand Seiko "Yuka Momiji" SBGJ273 Red Dial Traveller GMT

Grand Seiko "Yuka Momiji" SBGJ273 Red Dial Traveller GMT


In Brief

  • Accompanied by a “flyer GMT”, the new Grand Seiko "Yuka Momiji" SBGJ273 Red dial traveller watch takes inspiration from autumnal colourways and falling maple leaves as seen on Japanese wooden floorboards in houses and monuments.
  • Sporting a striking striated red dial, Japanese design, nature and culture is at the heartbeat (or should that be Hi-Beat) of this new watch with signature Zaratsu polishing, gold GMT hand together with polished and brushed applied markers and hands.
  • Evoking traditional lacquered wooden floorboards found in Japanese monuments and homes, the classic round face, box sapphire crystal, open caseback and 4,800 A/m antimagnetic properties are impressive features of the new Grand Seiko "Yuka Momiji" SBGJ273.
  • Yuka Momiji, Japanese for floor maple, represents the symbolic red accents found during this most captivating time of the year, reflected in the one of a kind striated red dial. 
  • Seen in the similarly influenced SBGH269 from 2019, there is most definitely a Zen-like feel to the new Grand Seiko "Yuka Momiji" SBGJ273 Hi-Beat GMT. This distinctively red model is a nice alternative to the similar traveller’s piece from the Elegance lineup..
  • This comes off the back of two new limited edition icy blue Elegance Collection GMT watches from August 2023 with the 9S66 and 9S86 movements.


Calibre 9S Ensures Grand Seiko Moves With The Times


The man, the myth, the mainspring. Not quite the legend (yet) but one of the most iconic movements of all time…you should forget the red striated dial on this new number for just a second. It is the 9S movement that is the driving force behind many of the epic waves that Grand Seiko are making in the watchmaking world. How so? Give us a minute to explain.


Calibre 9S 60th Anniversary Edition Movements, Source:

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The Calibre 9S burst onto the horological scene in 1998, at the same time as France winning the World Cup for the first time. With Zinedine Zidane providing a knockout of himself on Marco Materrazi in the World Cup Final, the Calibre 9S brought in a new age of mechanical watchmaking at Grand Seiko.

Produced to deliver the highest levels of accuracy and pristine durability standards, it literally kick-started Grand Seiko’s endeavours into luxury watchmaking. This really did give the brand an extra push into the realms of luxury watches and was to become the timekeeping foundation that embedded them with collectors and enthusiasts.  

Look, it’s not reached Zenith’s El Primero movement level still but the calibre 9S gave birth to a number of different movements encompassing a myriad of first rate complications and functions. For example, the pioneering Calibre 9SA5 featured a Dual-Impulse Escapement and of course powered their first ever mechanical chronograph, the highly rated and Hi-Beat Tentagraph

2023 Tentagraph Chronograph, Source: Brand site

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Now in its 25th year, Grand Seiko are not turning back the mechanical clock but pressing ahead with new luxury watches and some sublime releases with not one but two GMT models across both the Elegance and Sport Collections. 

Time may be just about up for Summer, but Grand Seiko’s horological light still burns brightly with these hot numbers that take their influence from of course Japanese nature, namely the icy blue skies across Mt. Iwate, the location of their HQ. 


Personality Of The Grand Seiko "Yuka Momiji" SBGJ273 Hi-Beat GMT


Vibrant, colourful, audacious and fiery red. A few choice words how we would describe the new Grand Seiko "Yuka Momiji" SBGJ273 Hi-Beat GMT. Measuring 39.5 mm in diameter with a thickness of 14.1mm, we have slightly bad news time peeps. Sadly, it is not going to be as slim on the wrist as say the new Longines HydroConquest GMT. Far from it.

Source: Brand site

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Part of the Elegance collection, it’s the Zaratsu polished surfaces and box shaped sapphire crystal that stand out on these luxury watches. Adding a hint of modernity, it may not be as on trend as a blue dial or salmon dial (check out our feature on the A. Lange & Söhne 1815 Rattrapante Perpetual Calendar.) but you will soon warm to the bold red dial of this new timepiece.

19mm is the measurement between the lugs which are perfectly executed but it is the dial that naturally steals the limelight more than Jay-Z rocking his uber-complex Grandmaster Chime at the 2023 Grammys. Brimming with detail and Japanese references, the changing of the seasons is the main focus of the new "Yuka Momiji" SBGJ273. In fact, millions of tourists gather each year across Japan in locations such as Matsumae Park to witness the falling of Sakura, otherwise known as cherry blossom. 

And the Japanese are certainly notorious for tradition and symbolic meaning in many cultural aspects. The cherry blossom season has many levels of significance including evolution, transience and nobleness. Throw in a pink Carrera as worn by Ryan Gosling at the Barbie premiere and you will be pinker than the Pink Panther.


“Cherry Blossom” SBGA413, Source: Brand site

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And it is this Japanese nature that resonates across this charming novelty, linking it to how the lacquered wooden floors of Japanese homes and buildings bounce reflections off the leaves from maple leaf trees. GS are apparently calling this element "Yuka Momiji". Are you still following? Where do they conjure this stuff up! 

This is of course replicated in the striking red striated dial, a technique they have used to visually introduce the dial with its vertical stripes that alters in a variety of light settings. Japanese buildings or not, the depth and intracites are undeniable. 

Although it may be a tad bulkier on the wrist but not quite the Rolex Deepsea Challenge 126067, these super sleek yet traditional GMT watches pay homage to the first ever GS designs back in 1960. That’ll be the round case and box sapphire crystal then.

Mind you, we would have liked to have seen another strap or bracelet as part of the specs. Look out for the majestic hands and rectangle shaped indices while you can discover flashes of gold accents on the “flyer” GMT function with accompanying 24 hour hand. Harmonious and more tranquil than queuing for a Moonswatch Mission To Neptunewe do like the autumnal feel of the striated dial and strong emotional connection that sums up the Grand Seiko " Yuka Momiji '' SBGJ273.


Source: Brand site

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For us, the red and gold accents, seen through the GMT hand and text work very well against the stainless steel silver bracelet, giving it plenty of classic vintage vibes. If that’s a trend. Some may find the 44GS better in terms of uniqueness but we ain’t complaining at Chrono Hunter HQ.  

Props to the sublime Zaratsu polishing again which you can identify across the indexes which make them stand out and is a credit to their highly skilled craftsmen. There is a push-pull crown situated at 3 o’clock as well as a crisp white date aperture. Providing 30 metres of water resistance, this might be one downside for you ocean loving seafarers or deep sea divers. It’s only a light hand wash, shower or splashing in a puddle after a tropical summer downpour. Anything more may damage it altogether.

The GMT hand is slightly smaller than what you might expect as it is positioned on the dial’s inside, but it doesn’t detract from the overall aesthetically pleasing experience. The design might be overcrowded for some but there’s lots of classic moves to rival Michael Jackson. Plus, we can safely say this timepiece is definitely not bad if you are in the market to buy a Grand Seiko.

Pair this with a snappy burgundy red suit and crisp shirt or accentuate it with a neutral polo to truly make your wrist stand out from the timekeeping crowd.


9S86 Movement


We don’t care if this new launch is powered by the more retro 9S86 movement. There’s something nice about old school timers as in the Breitling Top Time editions paying homage to age old classic cars like the Thunderbird. We can see Parker rocking this on his wrist with no hesitation! 

 Source: Brand site

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Are they a tad on the thick side? Yes. Does this detract from its overall aesthetics or Japanese themed representation? Hardly. Offering great value for money, it still boasts many elements that horophiles are looking for when they buy a Grand Seiko. The design is second to none and you are still enjoying a respectable 36,000vph, admired through the sapphire caseback. 

This in-house 9S86 automatic movement still packs a timekeeping punch with 55 hours of power reserve that easily makes it weekend-proof for last minute business meetings or getaways. Refined and practical, it has magnetic resistance up to 4,800 A/m while the accuracy rating on the 9S86 automatic movement remains at a hardy +5 to –3 seconds daily.  

Oh yes, and there’s also an adjustable 12-hour hand, meaning you have the ability to set local time when you are jet setting across numerous time zones. On the caseback you will find a few descriptions from “Made in Japan” to water resistant and stainless steel, viewed on top of the signature GS architecture incorporating large stripes.  

A turn on or turn off perhaps for some.


Specifications Of The New Grand Seiko "Yuka Momiji" SBGJ273 Hi-Beat GMT




Case Diameter




Case material

stainless steel with signature Zaratsu polishing


Red striated based on wooden floors, known as Yuka-Momiji


Hours, minutes, seconds, date, GMT

Number of Jewels 



9S86 Calibre



Limited Edition


Permanent Collection


Water Resistance

30 metres


Five row stainless steel 

Clasp Style 

Folding with a push button mechanism



Lug to Lug measurement 



Where Can You Buy A New Grand Seiko "Yuka Momiji" SBGJ273 Hi-Beat GMT


Available from mid-September 2023 at both select retail stores and branded boutiques, you can buy a Grand Seiko for £6,600 at the time of writing.


What’s Our View?


Is this a dress watch? Not particularly but it is still packed with classic features by way of the retro box sapphire crystal and round case. In addition, we would have liked to have seen the Grand Seiko "Yuka Momiji" SBGJ273 in another elegant bracelet aside from the stainless steel version. 

But beggars can't be choosers in this game and there is lots to get our horological teeth into here. For starters, the creative poetic licence over at GS has been in overdrive with a host of new releases over the last few months. These watches and styles are becoming increasingly popular with enthusiasts who simply adore the polished Zaratsu finishing, a hallmark of this top luxury brand. 

The one of a kind red striated dial and finishing techniques ensures we doth our horological hat to the craftsmen over at GS Towers in Iwate, moments from Lake Shinshu where the watches are made. 


Best Red Dial Watches


If you are looking for the best red dial watches, here are our top picks below;



Grand Seiko sure knows how to sell a watch. With more pulling power than Japanese anime, they understand how to put craftsmanship front and centre. Another potentially solid investment choice, for GS fans, it enjoys versatility, one of the most recognised Hi-Beat movements in the business and GMT functionality. 

Ideal for business travellers, debonair gents conducting global meetings or busy office execs, it does encapsulate what we liked so much in other watches from the brand like the SBGE245. Despite the style stakes being adopted for contemporary addicts, GS shows no signs of slowing down regarding their plethora of new releases. Yes, it may have a thicker case than other watches residing within this particular category but like a Speedmaster, we ain’t tired yet of its impact.


For now, the Shizukuishi inspiration mill is ticking along as smoothly as the 9S86.


Already received your annual bonus? Want to buy a Grand Seiko at the best possible price? Looking to sell your Grand Seiko or require a quick and accurate valuation? Time to contact Chrono Hunter here. Whether purchase or sale, discuss your specific requirements with our dedicated team for the most seamless and secure customer experience.  

With first class service, unparalleled brand expertise and quick turnaround, receive multiple offers from our established selection of luxury retailers and choose which one is right for you. Download our dedicated app today or simply enter the details of the watch via our simple online form. Visit our website or check out our Trustpilot reviews to discover why we are your go-to source when you buy a watch or sell a watch.


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Further Reading: 

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