From technical updates on Professional models to aesthetic enhancements on timeless classics, Rolex demonstrates its perpetual quest for excellence in watchmaking.
Oyster Perpetual Air-King
First launched in 1958 as a tribute to the explorers of the skies and a celebration of pioneers of aviation, the Air-King collection was refreshed in 2016 to huge acclaim. This year, Rolex further elevates the watch’s stature with a completely redesigned Oystersteel case that features the inclusion of a crown guard and straight sides, like the majority of Professional category models. The proportions of the Oyster bracelet have also been revisited, and notably, the centre link has been broadened. In a first for the model, it is equipped with an Oysterlock safety clasp.
The dial also features a refreshed and perfectly balanced display by adding a “0” before the “5”. In addition, the new-generation Air-King benefits from an optimised Chromalight display, guaranteeing maximum legibility in dark conditions. The hands and triangular hour marker at 12 o’clock are filled or coated with a new luminescent material that provides a longer-lasting intense glow. The 3, 6 and 9 numerals, which were previously made entirely from 18 ct white gold, are now also visible in the dark thanks to this innovative material, which is exclusive to Rolex.
Another first for the model can be found under the black lacquered dial – calibre 3230. A self-winding movement at the forefront of watchmaking technology, it offers outstanding performance in terms of precision, power reserve, resistance to shocks and magnetic fields, convenience and reliability.
Oyster Perpetual GMT-Master II
The most distinctive iteration of the watch of choice for travellers to date, the new GMT-Master II is a watch that connects people beyond time zones. At first blush, it surprises fans with a two-colour monobloc Cerachrom bezel insert in green and black – the first time this colour pairing is seen on the model.
More importantly, its crown and crown guard are placed on the left, while the date aperture is found at 9 o’clock. The repositioning of the winding crown and date display is, in and of itself, an innovation for the collection. The modifications necessitate changes in the precision testing process for some of the final controls carried out as part of the Superlative Chronometer certification of the watch. At the forefront of watchmaking, the GMT-Master II is equipped with the self-winding calibre 3285, enabling it to display an additional time zone in 24-hour format.
A welcomed introduction for left-handed travellers and those who prefer to wear their watches on their right wrist, the new GMT-Master II is a testament to the brand’s pursuit of excellence.
Oyster Perpetual Day-Date 40
More than six decades since its launch, the Day-Date continues to embody the innovative spirit of Rolex, while maintaining its position as the Swiss manufacture’s most prestigious offering. This year, the Day-Date 40 reached new heights, thanks to the creation of a brand new fluted bezel in 950 platinum that matches its case material.
Lauded for its exceptional luminosity and captivating white glow, 950 platinum is the most regal metal available but also notoriously challenging to work with, especially at the finishing stages of the production. Rolex devised an innovative new manufacturing process, which took many years of research and development, to produce fluting with the perfect shape and sparkling surfaces. It was a technical feat that was realised thanks to the brand’s outstanding expertise.
The Day-Date remains a technical marvel as it was the first calendar wristwatch to indicate, in addition to the date, the day of the week spelt out in full since its launch in 1956. Today, the emblematic Day-Date display is powered by the new-generation calibre 3255, and the day of the week is available in a choice of 26 languages.
Oyster Perpetual Yacht-Master 42
The refinement done to this emblematic sailing timepiece has been a long time coming. Since its 2019 debut, the Yacht-Master 42 had been offered uniquely in 18 ct white gold. It is now available in 18 ct yellow gold for the first time. The nautical watch is a perfect blend of inspired refinement and excellent performance on the wrist, making it a choice timepiece whether on or off the water.
Crafted from a solid block of 18 ct yellow gold, created and cast at the brand’s foundry in Geneva, Switzerland, the 42 mm case of the Yacht-Master 42 bears a bidirectional rotatable bezel and a Cerachrom insert in matt black ceramic. Its graduations and numerals are raised and polished, matching the watch’s black lacquered dial that comes with an optimised Chromalight display that enhances its readability in dark conditions.
Just like the original model, the new Yacht-Master 42 is fitted with the innovative Oysterflex bracelet that is made up of flexible, curved metal blades overmoulded with high-performance black elastomer, thereby offering the robustness and reliability of a metal bracelet with the flexibility, comfort, and aesthetics of an elastomer strap.
Oyster Perpetual Datejust 31
The archetypal classic watch of Rolex is no stranger to artistic expressions that demonstrate the brand’s dial-making expertise. This year, the Swiss manufacture breathes new life into the Datejust 31 with a striking floral motif that employs three different finishes – sunray, matt, and grained. Comprising 24 flowers, the design is enlivened by diamonds of varying sizes adorning the centre of each bloom, evoking the enchanting shimmer of dewdrops in natural light.
Available in three new versions, the first is in white Rolesor (combining Oystersteel and white gold) with an azzurro blue dial, fitted with the iconic fluted bezel, and an Oyster bracelet in Oystersteel. The other two versions come with 46 brilliant-cut diamond-set bezels, with the 18 ct yellow gold variant featuring an olive green dial, fitted with a President bracelet, and the Everose Rolesor version featuring a silver dial, fitted with a Jubilee bracelet. The new Datejust 31 is equipped with calibre 2236, a self-winding mechanical movement that is at the forefront of watchmaking technology.