Monta Skyquest 2 Review

Still a best-in-class GMT

It’s no secret that I am a fan of Monta. Most of their catalog has rolled through my watch box, and the entire collection has been featured here. Monta recently decided to sunset the current generations of the Oceanking and Skyquest and stated they would return soon. This led the rest of the Watch Clicker staff and me to all sorts of speculation, especially as to what the new generations would look like. While we’re still waiting for the new Oceanking, we now have the latest Skyquest. 

With a new generation of a watch that has been in a brand’s catalog for several years, there is going to be an adjustment period as well as those who love it or hate it. I had the opportunity to see the entire range for this review, including the newest dial configuration to the family, the Opalin dial. Let’s dive (fly?) in. 


On the Wrist

The Skyquest has always been a great fitting GMT. Monta was one of the first microbrands (although I don’t consider them one anymore) to offer a thin GMT. The original Skyquest was 40.7mm wide, 49mm lug-to-lug, and 11.9mm thick. The Skyquest 2 is just about the same in every aspect except for the lug-to-lug, which has been shortened to 47.4mm. 49-51mm lug-to-lug watches are at the tip of what my 6.75″ wrist can handle, so the change is welcome. It makes quite the difference in how this watch feels on the wrist. It allows the wearer to see more of that beautiful bracelet and opens the Skyquest up for those with smaller wrists. 


The original Skyquest was flashy, bold, and busy. The ceramic bezel combined with the 24-hour chapter ring created a watch that begged to be looked at. It grabbed your attention and wouldn’t let go. Not that this is bad, but the Skyquest 2 brings the watch’s design to a more approachable level. The bezel insert is now anodized aluminum, and the chapter ring has been removed. This creates a watch that feels more like a proper tool watch than a piece of jewelry. Monta wanted to keep the Skyquest’s attention-grabbing capabilities but deliver them differently. The chapter ring change and larger numerals on the bezel give everything a more legible appearance and still commands your attention. 


I do not doubt that there are going to be plenty of people who prefer the look of the original Skyquest. It’s more blingy, has more polish, and, oddly enough, looks more modern than the Skyquest 2. However, I see the Skyquest 2 as the tool watch Monta always wanted this to be. I can’t say why they didn’t create this version first, but it feels more like a watch I would wear when traveling than the original. It feels better on the wrist, and the subtle changes that give the dial more room to breathe make it a more legible design. After all, those are the things you want in a tool watch. 


Monta Skyquest 2 Specs

Case Width




Case Thickness


Lug Width






Water Resistance







Super-LumiNova BGW9


Monta M-23 (Sellita SW330)



Dial Details

The first things I noticed about the dial were the things that got bigger and the things that got smaller. The markers are much more prominent (and packed with lume) and make ample use of the extra dial space. They lost their bevel as they moved toward the center of the dial, but they now create a more cohesive look with the flatter dial design. 

  • monta-skyquest-v2-16
  • monta-skyquest-v2-15
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  • monta-skyquest-v2-13

The Monta text and logo at 12 o’clock always felt a smidge oversized on the previous Skyquest. Monta has scaled it down slightly and is now using the more stylized version of the logo they introduced on the Noble. The date window now appears to sit lower on the dial. It is either because it is, or the text at 6 o’clock being smaller doesn’t make it feel like it is encroaching on the dial text. 


The sword hands are carried over from the previous Skyquest, and I’m happy they are. This handset is one of the things I love that Monta keeps across most of their range. They have room for lots of lume and allow the wearer to read the time at a glance. One thing that I am sad to see go is the kinked GMT hand. As I understand it, Monta made this change to allow for fewer manufacturing difficulties, which will give them the ability to restock faster. I loved that kinked GMT hand and will miss it, but the straight GMT hand serves its purpose and adds the same touch of color to the watch as it did previously. 


Case & Bracelet

If you’ve handled any of Monta’s watches, you will know how excellent their case finishing is. Their cases look like they are made of liquid steel, and their brushing and polishing are flawless. The Skyquest 2 is no exception. Aside from the change in dimensions, the case is mostly the same, save for a few minor changes. 


The lugs no longer have an inner bevel. This change loses some of the flash the Skyquest had but gives the lugs a slightly beefier appearance. They don’t look too thick, but they seem more proportional to the rest of the case. The other significant change is carried over from the last generation of the Oceanking. The crown guards are now slightly tapered as they move in toward the crown. I had a gripe with the Skyquest: the crown was a little tricky to unscrew because of the crown guards. This addresses that problem and looks better. 


The bezel and its action are as fantastic as always. The bidirectional bezel has 48 wonderful clicks. The tension is perfect, there is no back play, and each position has a satisfying click as it snaps into place. As I mentioned before, the numerals on the bezel are more prominent and take up nearly the whole width of the bezel insert. Depending on your configuration, you will have either a solid black bezel or a color split. 


As far as I can tell, the bracelet is unchanged, which is fine with me. The bracelet is as comfortable as always, and thanks to the half links, I can dial in a perfect fit. If you’re unfamiliar with Monta’s bracelets, they feature fully articulating links and a quick micro-adjust system under the hood.


Final Thoughts

Monta is a brand that continually impresses me. Their watches are always beautifully finished, built like tanks, and look damn good. The Skyquest 2 is no exception. I’m sure some will see the design choices, like removing the kinked GMT hand and inner lug bevel, as a step back, but I see it as a step forward. The changes make the Skyquest 2 a more approachable watch and allow it to fit into situations more comfortably. The Skyquest is still a best-in-class GMT, and just like the original Skyquest, that remains true at almost any price point. 

Check out more Monta reviews at The Watch Clicker here

Check out the Monta website here

More Images of the Monta Skyquest

Comments 2
  1. I’m 2 weeks into owning my new Skyquest black bezel and have no regrets. It really feels more like a tool watch, but versatile enough to be worn in any circumstance. As my daily wearer it fits nicely under a dress shirt at work as well as casual clothes in the evening. I’ve owned several Monta’s and this is the first model that feels more like a watch verses a piece of jewelry. All the pieces compliment each other and makes sense when you see it in person and wear it.

    This is the most comfortable watch I’ve owned thanks to the new ergonomic design and shorter lug to lug. It fits my 6.75 wrist perfectly and wears much smaller. The improved legibility of the dial and bezel are welcome changes.

    Overall, it’s a fantastic watch that competes with the higher end brands. It’s a lot of watch for the money and has the fit and feel of a watch 3 times the cost.

  2. Don’t buy into the hype and don’t waste your money. Purchased the gilt Pepsi and the first one I received had scuffs and dirt on the interior of the watch box, had a faulty crown that wouldn’t engage and the whole dial moved when pulling out the crown. I gave them the benefit of the doubt and asked for a replacement to be sent. The second one had a noisy rotor that could be heard and felt and ran at -20 sec / day. They did ultimately give me a refund but their response was a bit backhanded as they basically said “I’m sorry that you’re sorry” instead of owning their mistakes. They also failed to publish my two star review on their website. Engaging in review censorship is unacceptable. They should stick to making watch straps for other watch brands that actually know how to make watches.

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