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For watch enthusiasts around the world, Baselworld is a special time of year when top watch brands release their new models. Among all the brands that exhibit at Baselworld, few come close to getting as much attention as Rolex does. Let’s take a look at the new Rolex watch models that made their debut at Baselworld 2017.

New Rolex Sea-Dweller

To mark the 50th anniversary of Rolex’s professional diver’s watch, the brand has unveiled an updated Sea-Dweller. The latest Rolex Sea-Dweller is brimming with brand new features. First, its Oyster case size has been increased from 40mm to a much larger 43mm. Second, for the first time ever, the Sea-Dweller ref. 126600 now includes a Cyclops lens on the sapphire crystal to magnify the date. Third, on the dial of the new Sea-Dweller ref. 126600 the “SEA-DWELLER” label is now in red font rather than white—a fitting tribute to the very first vintage Sea-Dweller from 1967. Furthermore, the Sea-Dweller now has a wider and more secure solid-link Oyster bracelet with an Oysterlock safety clasp to prevent accidental unfastening. The bracelet also includes the Fliplock extension link and the Glidelock system to permit easy adjusting.

Sea-Dweller ref. 126600 New Rolex Watch
Rolex Sea-Dweller ref. 126600 presented at Baselworld 2017 (Image courtesy of Rolex)

Finally, the brand new Sea-Dweller is powered by the new generation Rolex Caliber 3235 automatic in-house movement. Not only does the Caliber 3235 include 14 new patents to boost resilience, accuracy, and precision, it also boasts Rolex’s -2/+2 seconds per day accuracy rate deviance—a standard launched in 2015.

New Rolex Daytona

Last year’s Daytona release caused such frenzy in the watch world that it would be hard to follow up with yet another Daytona model for this edition of Baselworld. But Rolex went ahead and released three new Daytona chronographs anyways—each sporting the Oysterflex bracelet. Exclusive to Rolex, the Oysterflex comprises of a metal bracelet coated with black rubber for optimal comfort, style, and security.

Cosmograph Daytona 116518LN Rolex Watch Baselworld 2017
Cosmograph Daytona ref. 116518LN presented at Baselworld 2017 (Image courtesy of Rolex)

There’s a yellow gold version (ref. 116518LN), the white gold version (ref. 116519LN), and the Everose—Rolex’s patented rose gold alloy—version (ref. 116515LN). In addition to the sporty black Oysterflex bracelet, the new gold Daytona chronographs also don the popular black Cerachrom ceramic bezel. Like all modern Rolex Daytona chronographs, the new gold and rubber Daytona models run on the Rolex Caliber 4130 chronograph movement with 72 hours of power reserve.

New Rolex Sky-Dweller

For the first time, Rolex has now introduced a two-tone version of the Sky-Dweller. There are two models, one in Rolesor yellow gold and stainless steel (ref. 326933) and the other in Rolesor white gold and stainless steel (ref. 326934). Each model comes with a variety of dial colors.

Sky-Dweller ref. 326933 Rolex Watch
New two-tone yellow gold and steel Sky-Dweller ref. 326933 (Image courtesy of Rolex)

Along with the new dial colors, the dial has also been revamped for easier reading—particularly in the dark. There are now luminescent stick indexes rather than the previous Arabic or Roman numeral options. Plus, the luminescent center hands are longer. The face of the Sky-Dweller is famously full of information—local time, second time zone, month indicator, and date window. What’s more, the Ring Command bezel still controls parts of the movement for time and date adjustments. That movement is the automatic Rolex Caliber 9001 with 72 hours of power reserve. Rolex fans will surely appreciate the more accessible price point of the two-tone Sky Dwellers over the previously all gold models.

New Rolex Datejust 41

Rolex presented the new Datejust 41 collection last year with a full yellow gold model and a two-tone Everose gold and steel model. This year however, the brand is widening the choice—and essentially dropping the entry price—of the larger flagship men’s dress watch with a stainless steel version (ref. 126300), in addition to a Rolesor white gold and stainless steel model (ref. 126334).

Datejust 41 126334 Rolex Watch
Stainless steel Datejust 41 ref. 126334 presented at Baselworld 2017 (Image courtesy of Rolex)

This being a Datejust collection, there is a slew of style choices from an Oyster or Jubilee bracelet to dial details such as index options, mother-of-pearl surfaces, or diamond embellishments. Driving the time and date functions of the newest iterations of the famous Rolex watch is the automatic mechanical Rolex Caliber 3235. The automatic in-house movement has 70 hours of power reserve and is accurate to -2/+2 seconds a day.

New Rolex Lady-Datejust 28

The larger Lady-Datejust 28 collection first made an appearance in 2015. The first editions included full gold models, followed up with some Rolesor editions in 2016. And now for 2017—in a similar fashion to the men’s Datejust 41—Rolex is expanding the collection again with a full stainless steel model (ref. 279160) and a Rolesor white gold and stainless steel model (ref. 279174).

Lady-Datejust 28 ref. 279160 Rolex Watch
New steel Lady-Datejust 28 ref. 279160 presented at Baselworld 2017 (Image courtesy of Rolex)

Also, like the men’s version, the Lady-Datejust 28 offers a diverse range of choices. Wearers can choose from Oyster and Jubilee bracelets, dial styles, and diamond options including diamond-set bezels. Like previous Lady-Datejust watches, also beating at the heart of the Lady-Datejust 28 is the Rolex Caliber 2236. This in-house automatic mechanical movement offers 55 hours of power reserve.

New Rolex Yacht-Master II

Since the Yacht-Master II collection is now celebrating its 10th anniversary, Rolex is giving it a slight facelift. Firstly, the original center hands have now been replaced with Mercedes-style hands. As a result, this is now more in line with other Rolex Professional models, such as the Submariner and GMT-Master II. Moreover, the original Yacht-Master II housed 12 square hour-markers, but now the brand has included an inverted triangle at 12 o’clock and a rectangular index at 6 o’clock.

Yacht-Master II ref. 116680 Rolex Watch
Refreshed Yacht-Master II ref. 116680 presented at Baselworld 2017 (Image courtesy of Rolex)

The rest of the model, however, remains intact. The ultimate sailor’s Rolex watch, the Yacht-Master II is equipped with the Caliber 4161 regatta chronograph. One of the most complicated movements from the brand, the 4161 includes a programmable countdown function to assist skippers during yachting races. And identical to all Rolex watch models since 2015, its Superlative Chronometer Officially Certified designation means its accuracy rate allowance is only -2/+2 seconds per day.

New Rolex Yacht-Master 40

Indeed the most surprising move from Rolex this year was the unveiling of the new Yacht-Master 40 ref. 116695 SATS. The new version of the Yacht-Master 40 is identical to the one launched in 2015, except for one very important detail—the bezel is set with a colorful array of gems.

Yacht-Master 40 ref. 116695 SATS Rolex Watch
Yacht-Master 40 ref. 116695 SATS presented at Baselworld 2017 (Image courtesy of Rolex)

The precious bezel on top of the 40mm Everose rose gold Oyster case houses 41 stones. These stones include 32 multicolored sapphires, eight tsavorites, and one triangular shaped diamond. With the black Oysterflex bracelet, this is one bejeweled Rolex watch unlike any we’ve ever seen.

Buying a Pre-Owned Rolex Watch

As the number one luxury watch brand in the world, anything Rolex does is always met with excitement and anticipation. While not all of these new Rolex models will please everyone, there certainly are some that will be welcomed with open arms.

If you’re looking for a Rolex watch but none of the above speaks to you, browse the Gray & Sons collection of pre-owned Rolex watches for a fantastic selection of vintage and modern pieces at highly attractive prices.

 

Written by

Celine Simon

Celine is a freelance luxury watch writer who has enjoyed working in the horology industry for over ten years. Like many of the high-end timepieces she writes about, she comes from Switzerland—the heart of fine watchmaking. From Singapore to Montreal to Geneva to Dubai, Celine has lived all over the world but now calls Southern California home.