Rolex Unveils Exemplary Timepieces That Prevailed at Watches & Wonders 2023
By The Time Place Magazine
A brand that is intent on defying all odds to master every aspect of watchmaking, Rolex recently presented its new timepieces at Watches & Wonder 2023. These novelties illustrate a desire to reinvent, while preserving a sense of continuity, to innovate while being mindful of tradition, and to leverage technology in daring to create. Driven by the ‘Superlative’ vision, Rolex perpetuates
a pursuit of excellence that has never been seen before in the annals of watchmaking. It is through such efforts, that the Swiss watchmaker produces exemplary watches that prevail and, in time, become icons.
OYSTER PERPETUAL COSMOGRAPH DAYTONA
The emblematic style and technical performance of the Cosmograph Daytona have cemented its iconic status well beyond the motor racing circuits. This year, to mark the 60th anniversary of the legendary watch, Rolex revisits the entire range with subtle refinements to a number of details.
OYSTER PERPETUAL YACHT-MASTER 42
From one icon to another, Rolex also reinforces the Oyster Perpetual Yacht-Master 42 by using RLX titanium. Now more lightweight and robust, the timepiece is perfectly suited to those who value freedom of movement. Created to address the demands and pressures of competitive sailing, this new version puts watchmaking excellence at the service of sporting performance.
Retaining the line’s quintessential elements, the major change in the well-loved model is its material. Specially chosen for its mechanical strength and corrosion resistance, RLX titanium is a lightweight alloy that is used for the timepiece’s Oyster case and bracelet. Aesthetically, the watch features a combination of polished, high-sheen and technical satin finishes that wonderfully showcases the brand’s excellence in finishing techniques. This produces a subtle play of textures and light between the gleam of the polished crown guard, the high-sheen lustre on the top edges of the lugs, and the matt grain of the technical satin finish. Overall, it adds an elegant appeal to this nautical watch.
The only other model that Rolex has crafted of RLX titanium, with the first being the Oyster Perpetual Deepsea Challenge, the new Yacht-Master 42 caters to the demand for lighter watches, without compromising on quality. It is truly a technical feat that showcases the brand’s mastery in every aspect of watchmaking expertise.
A result of Rolex’s comprehensive in-house expertise and unwavering commitment to excellence, the brand inaugurates its Perpetual collection with the Perpetual 1908. Named in homage to the year the ‘Rolex’ trademark was officially registered in Switzerland, the Perpetual 1908 is elegant, classic, decidedly contemporary, and immortalizes Rolex’s age-long daring spirit.
Inspired by one of the first Rolex watches fitted with the Perpetual rotor, the 1908 is the first member of the Perpetual collection. This new collection is a reinterpretation of traditional watchmaking style imbued with quintessential watchmaking expertise and the aesthetic heritage of Rolex.
The 1908 is defined by its design, which conveys the full strength of the watch’s character in the simplicity of the display and by details that confer its unique identity. This timepiece perfectly embodies the spirit of the Perpetual collection, at whose core lies the celebration of the art of watchmaking in its noblest form.
Available in 18 ct yellow or white gold, with an intense white or intense black dial, the watch is distinguished by its elegantly slim case. On its face, the bezel is domed and with fine fluting; it is divided into halves: the upper part is domed, while the lower part has been given an elegant fluting. In addition, it is graced with
Arabic numerals 3, 9 and 12, faceted index hour markers, and features a distinctive hour hand that has a circle before the tip while the minute hand is shaped like a two-edged sword. It also offers a small seconds subdial at 6 o’clock, with the words ‘Superlative Chronometer’ above it in an arc shape.
Measuring 39 mm in diameter, the timepiece is guaranteed waterproof to a depth of 50 metres (165 feet), with the case providing optimal protection for the movement nestled inside. Moreover, the domed crystal and the transparent case back are made of virtually scratchproof sapphire and benefit from an anti-reflective coating.
The splendour of this model extends to the back, thanks to a transparent case back that allows the technical sophistication and the decoration on the movement to be seen and admired. It is driven by the Superlative Chronometer-certified calibre 7140, which combines performance with utmost elegance.
At the forefront of watchmaking technology, this movement includes the Chronergy escapement, the Syloxi hairspring and Paraflex shock absorbers. Created with a number of innovations that led to the filing of five patents, this movement, designed and manufactured specifically for the watch, features bridges that are finished with the Rolex Côtes de Genève decoration—a reinterpretation of a well-known decoration in watchmaking—and a cut-out oscillating weight in 18 ct yellow gold.
Fitted with an alligator leather strap with a green lining, the novel timepiece is equipped with a Dualclasp. Depending on the variant, the watch is completed with either a matt brown or matt black alligator leather strap. Raising the art of watchmaking to new heights, the 1908 carves out a place for itself among Rolex’s repertoire of watches.
Like all Rolex watches, the new Perpetual 1908 models carry the Superlative Chronometer certification redefined by Rolex in 2015. This designation ensures waterproofness, precision, and excellent performance on the wrist. The Superlative Chronometer status is symbolised by the green seal that comes with every Rolex watch and is coupled with an international five-year guarantee.
Timeless in its essence, the Oyster Perpetual collection has been continually reinterpreted and have gradually been endowed with the brand’s successive technical innovations. The timepieces in the line are direct descendants of the world’s first waterproof wristwatch, on which Rolex has built its reputation since 1926.
Throughout the years, the distinguished manufacture has perfected the Oyster case, making it a symbol of waterproofness. The middle case is crafted from a solid block of Oystersteel. Its case back, edged with fine fluting, is hermetically screwed down with a special tool that allows only Rolex watchmakers to access the movement.
This year, the Swiss watchmaker brings in a new dial decoration for its Oyster Perpetual range, recognized for its pure lines and universal elegance. Named ‘Celebration’, this brand-new motif is composed of differently sized bubbles fringed with black, encapsulating the vivid colours of the lacquered dials introduced in 2020: candy pink, turquoise blue, yellow, coral red and green.
Alive with colour, vitality and positivity, the dial decoration is a representation of Rolex’s masterful technique. It is carried out in strictly controlled conditions and requires the utmost precision at every stage of its creation. The new Oyster Perpetual is available in three sizes: 31 mm, 36 mm, and 41 mm.
The variants in the series are driven by two movements at the forefront of watchmaking technology. The Oyster Perpetual 31 is equipped with calibre 2232, fitted with the Rolex-produced and patented Syloxi hairspring and a power reserve of up to 55 hours.
The larger models—Oyster Perpetual 36 mm and Oyster Perpetual 41 mm—are both powered by calibre 3230 that incorporates the patented Chronergy escapement and has an extended power reserve of 70 hours, thanks to its barrel architecture and the escapement’s superior efficiency. The movements are equipped with a self-winding system via a Perpetual rotor.
OYSTER PERPETUAL DAY-DATE 36
At Watches & Wonders 2023, Rolex not only delivered highly technical novelties, it also endeavoured to showcase its playful side. The brand presented an unexpected creative twist to one of its iconic models with the new Oyster Perpetual Day-Date 36, featuring a dial punctuated by colourful puzzle pieces.
Unique and meaningful, the puzzle consists of turquoise blue, red, fuchsia, orange, green and yellow pieces that fit together on a single-colour background, each representing one of the key moments in life.
The intricate work on the dial is the result of the demanding champlevé enamelling technique performed by an in-house enameller. The watch also displays a new emotion each day, bringing an element of spontaneity into the wearers’ lives and allowing them to invest the reading of time with their changing moods.
On the day window, a calendar of inspirational words such as ‘Love’, ‘Peace,’ and ‘Hope,’ are on display, while on the date window, a repertoire of emotions expressed in 31 emojis were designed especially for the model.
Through its creations launched this year, Rolex cements its place as a true pioneer and constant innovator in the world of watchmaking, perfectly demonstrating its perpetual pursuit of excellence.
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