There’s always one watch release each year that gets collectors all hot and bothered, and that release usually comes from Rolex. Not one to disappoint, for 2020 the watchmaker has launched the new generation of its Oyster Perpetual Submariner and Oyster Perpetual Submariner Date, which are two of the coolest divers’ watch collections the world has ever seen (even the King, Elvis Presley, was spotted wearing one). And what’s more, these new Submariners don’t cost a fortune. Rolex has plenty of bank-busting timepieces that sit within the top tier of haute horologerie, but the new no-date Submariner can be yours for CHF 7,700.
Launched in 1953, the Submariner was the first divers’ wristwatch that was waterproof to a depth of 100 metres (330 feet). The Submariner Date, which comes with a date function in addition to the time, was introduced in 1969, and both watches were gradually upgraded to a waterproof depth of 300 metres (1,000 feet).
Historically speaking, the Submariner is particularly special for Rolex because it’s the brand’s first modern divers’ watch. It’s been worn by Hollywood actors, sports legends and pretty much every other set of noteworthy people you can think of. So what’s different about the new Submariner and Submariner Date? Each features a slightly larger case size of 41mm (previous Submariners measure 40mm) and an Oyster bracelet that comes with a broader centre link.
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Unveiled earlier this year, the calibre 3230 powers the new no-date Submariner, and the 2020 Submariner Date is equipped with the Calibre 3235. It’s the first time the calibre 3235 has been incorporated into the Submariner range, and both movements are entirely developed and manufactured by Rolex.
Like its predecessors, the new Submariner comes in Oystersteel (among other versions), an alloy specially developed by the watchmaker, and has a black dial and rotatable bezel with a Cerachrom insert in black ceramic, which is virtually scratchproof and unaffected by the sun’s ultraviolet rays. The bezel’s knurled edges offer excellent grip, so that divers are able to set the time even while wearing gloves. Meanwhile, three new versions of the Submariner Date come with different coloured Cerachrom bezels. Collectors can choose between an Oystersteel model with a black dial and green bezel or an 18-karat white gold model with a black dial and blue bezel. A yellow Rolesor with a blue dial and blue bezel is also on offer.
The hands and hour markers, as well as other display elements, are coated with Chromalight, an innovative luminescent material, which emits a long-lasting blue glow in the dark. Like all Rolex watches, these new releases carry the Superlative Chronometer certification, which guarantees their excellent performance. When it comes to taking past models and refining them to a higher standard, no brand wears that crown more proudly than Rolex.