We suspect that Rolex is only delivering in very limited quantities to their dealers partly to fight the grey market. In recent years, Rolex has sent out letters to their dealers on how to prevent selling to (grey market) dealers and speculators. Drying out the grey market by not delivering your watches to dealers might be a solution, of course. But just like organizing a strike, you also hurt the innocent with these actions. Customers that walk into a Rolex boutique or dealer and get a ‘No’ if they inquire about a GMT-Master, Submariner or Daytona. Does that make the watch even more desirable than it already is? Perhaps that’s the case for some people, and they might go for a bi-color or more accessible model (e.g. Datejust) instead. But getting a no over and over again, what does that lead to?
The situation we now see occurring is that some of the most wanted models, such as the new Rolex GMT-Master Pepsi or even the bi-color “Root Beer 2.0” is now being offered by non-authorized dealers for way more than the official retail price.
it remains a bit of a mystery why certain Rolex watches aren’t available. After all, they’re a company that produces so many watches per year in-house. Could Rolex perhaps, with all the bi-colour models in stock, limit production for those and increase production for all stainless steel? We will never know for sure as Rolex remains silent. Also authorized dealers (we asked a few) keep coming back with the same answer, that the demand is simply too high for these watches. We just hope that Rolex can solve this issue and start the delivery of their stainless steel sports watches. We’d love to see it for the new models, like the GMT-Master II with Pepsi bezel, but also for longstanding models like the GMT-Master II, the blue & black version of that watch, the Submariners, etc.
We are a bit reluctant to believe that the demand is too high because this has been going on for quite a while now, so measurements could have been taken during that time. We also fear that this is Rolex’s answer to grey market, but at what cost? Rolex makes great products, incredibly reliable and attractive watches, we hope they are able to fix this issue of delivering them to the end consumers.
The Rolex Yachtmaster was never intended to be a real tool watch (the Yachtmaster II is a different story with its regatta timer). One could debate whether a sailor should wear a watch at all, as you could easily hurt your hand when your watch get stuck in ropes or something. I loved my Yachtmaster and although that’s probably not a very watch purist thing to say, I especially liked the platinum dial and bezel. I think that the new Rolex Yachtmaster ref. 116655 in 18 carat Everose gold is not much different compared to the rest of the Yachtmaster collection. It isn’t meant to be a toolwatch, but the watch surely has this nautical theme of course.
What’s different from the other Yachtmaster watches, is the use of the 18 carat Everose gold for the case as well as the Cerachrom insert in black ceramic for its gold rotatable bezel. The black dial is something I had to get used to when seeing it, as it makes the watch a bit mysterious. Where platinum and blue were the dial colours associated with this watch before, the new Rolex Yachtmaster ref. 116655 has a totally different appeal due to the new materials and colours. In short, this watch was a bit awkward to me at first. Being unmistakeably a Rolex Yachtmaster but with its black, gold and rubber elements something totally new and different as well.
The raised numerals on the Cerachrom insert are very Yachtmaster-ish, as the platinum and gold editions also have this feature. Where my old Yachtmaster ref.16622 with platinum bezel got some scratches on and between the numerals, chances are very small this will happen to this Cerachrom insert. Another very cool feature, at least I think it is, is the gold printing on the black dial. It perfectly matches the material of the case, bezel and folding clasp.
The new Osyterflex is a wonderful alternative to their metal Oyster bracelets and is perhaps also Rolex’ answer to the 3rd party rubber straps out there. Although chances are very small that Rolex is really bothered with these aftermarket straps. Slipping on the Rolex Yachtmaster ref.116655 watch is a pleasure, the Oysterflex bracelet is amazingly comfortable. According to , this black elastomer strap is very durable, robust and of course resistant to (salt) water. Looking at the inside of the strap, and this is what makes the Oysterflex bracelet so comfortable on the wrist, is the patented cushion system. The cushions on the inside of the strap make the watch being very stable on the wrist and you get the idea that the strap isn’t really touching your skin. Like a floating strap. The Oysterflex bracelet comes with an 18 carat Everose gold Oysterlock folding clasp that is attached to the strap using a flexible titanium and nickel alloy metal blade. The same attachment system is used to connect the strap to the watch itself.
Rolex: Seeing Red & Blue
Prior to Baselword, Monochrome, a popular website predicted 5 watches that Rolex will introduce during the said event. They posted their predictions 2 weeks before Baselworld and guess what, Monochrome was 60% correct. Take a look at their hits and misses below:
According to the website, the “Pepsi” GMT Master is something that every Rolex fan is wishing for and last year, the company introduced the GMT Master II in blue/black combination which was thus coined the Batman GMT. The writers said they were hoping for a Pepsi GMT and they aren’t expecting any aesthetic or technical changes aside from the Cerachrom bezel in red and blue.
And it did materialize. The new GMT-Master II replica has a bezel in red and blue Cerachrom insert made in a single piece, something that’s never been seen before. It has a white gold case measuring 40mm and it has a price tag of the origian is $38,250.
This is the Rolex model that has a date aperture with a Cyclops eye lens over it. It is also recognized for its fluted bezel, which you should also find in knockoffs. The Rolex Datejust is easily recognizable from its date aperture with a distinctive magnifying Cyclops eye, and also from the fluted bezel. This model has varying bracelets and dial colors and materials. From yellow Gold to black leather.
This model was released in 1956. It was designed for scientists who sometimes visit places with different forces in magnetic fields. The watch should be good enough to withstand 1,000 gauss. The European Council for Nuclear Research has approved of the Milgauss’ ability to do so. It has an orange second hand with shaped in a lightning bolt. These are the important features to look for in replicas.
Rolex Daytona with Red Daytona Lettering and Panda Dial
The article published on Monochrome went on to say that Cerachrom bezels are the newest trend for Rolex and they possess excellent qualities including being scratch resistant as well as being able to prevent fading. Having said this, Monochrome wanted a revival of the Daytona 6263 one of the coolest Rolex watches ever made. They predict that the Daytona will have a Panda dial and a red text that read DAYTONA, with a black bezel and screwed pushers. They also predict that it would still be a platinum case but with a black ceramic bezel.
Unfortunately Rolex didn’t launch a Daytona with the details that Monochrome predicted. Although they introduced a new Daytona, it has a platinum case, pave diamond dial, bezel set with 36 diamonds and baby blue subdials.