1964 marked the resurgence of a post-war Japan onto the world stage as a first-rate economic power, most readily apparent in Tokyo hosting the Summer Olympics that same year. Seiko – despite having no prior experience in sports timing (much to Heuer’s chagrin, we are sure) – was named the official timekeeper, and began research and development in preparation for the games in 1961.
As part of Seiko’s R&D, and to commemorate its upcoming role in the summer games, it developed several advanced wristwatches for the Olympics, such as the December 6217 GMT for sale here.
The 6217 was released for a short period of time during and after the Olympics, and then discontinued. Seiko also released concurrently two variants of the 571x - the 5717 and 5719; as well as the ultra rare 5718 (the ultimate grail of most Seiko collectors) - all for for the Olympics. Never one to pass up on an advertising opportunity, Seiko naturally advertised and associated the 571x and GMTs with the games.
This Seiko 6217 comes with a black leather strap, funky NATO strap, Pelican travel case, and springbar tool.
1964 Seiko 6217-7000 GMT Automatic
DIAL: Original silver Seiko-signed dial with polished hour indices; original hour, minute, and second hands.
CASE: Original 38mm (41mm w/crown) x 44.5mm stainless steel case. Olympic torch commemorating the 1964 games, while faded (as happened frequently with these), remains visible – the 1964 Summer Olympics were held in Tokyo from October 10th to 24th.
BAND: This 6217 comes a new black leather strap, with off-white/cream colored stitching and stainless-steel hardware. It also comes with a second funky nylon NATO strap, with stainless-steel hardware, which plays off the dial of the watch.
CRYSTAL: Domed acrylic crystal in excellent condition – no scratches or blemishes.
MOVEMENT: Original Seiko 6217 autotmatic movement, which beats at 18,000 BPH and produced in December 1964.
CROWN: Original large unsigned crown.