Rolex seems to be on a less conservative path and the novelties presented are more creative, more modern and more controversial. In 2016, Rolex introduced what is certainly the hippest watch on the market now, a watch that many collectors had been clamoring for: the Ceramic Daytona. Yet, that same year, it also produced something totally unpredictable, the Air King with a colorful dial. In 2017, it was the Sea-Dweller 126600 with its large case, its red line of text and the controversial cyclops lens on the date. Rolex also presented the Sky-Dweller in steel, a watch that we never expected to see in such a common material.
This is all to illustrate how Rolex has become less easy to predict. While it is now harder to guess what Rolex might introduce, it also allows us a more creative license. We have to inject a bit of modernity and funkiness into our predictions… And talking about them, here are some predictions for the Rolex Baselworld 2018 novelties.
ROLEX SUBMARINER 126610LN (NEW CASE, CALIBRE 3225)
In 2015, Rolex introduced a new generation of movements, the caliber 32xx – which was launched originally on the Day-Date 40 with the caliber 3255, followed by the caliber 3235 seen on the Datejust and the Sea-Dweller. It would make sense then to see this new generation movement being introduced in other collections and that’s why we’ve imagined a Baselworld 2018 Rolex Submariner Date.
In addition to being fitted with the new caliber 3235, we can envision an updated case for this new Submariner Date. While still measuring 40mm in diameter, it could feature “shaved” lugs and a slimmer profile, as we’ve seen on other recent watches.
The current 116610LN (left) and our possible Baselworld 2018 Rolex Submariner 126610LN (right)
A cool, slightly vintage touch. Finally, as the Submariner is a proper dive watch, it would make sense to see it equipped with the Oysterflex rubber bracelet.
Since the Submariner is one of the most sought-after models in the collections, it would be quite risky to drastically alter its character so we think just an update but not a revolutionary change.
ROLEX EXPLORER 1 POLAR WHITE DIAL
We know how this luxury brand is behaving these days, anything could happen and this is why we have imagined a “polar” version of the Explorer 1.
Based on the specifications of the model introduced at Baselworld 2016 we’ve imagined a white dial version of the Explorer. This luxury watch remains a myth for vintage collectors and its comeback could make quite some noise.
As part of the Baselworld 2018 predictions, this Explorer 1 “Polar” features a white dial with the iconic 3-6-9 numerals, yet the major update is the addition of black luminous paint on the indexes and hands, creating a high contrast between the dial and the markers. All inscriptions follow the same idea and are printed in black.
ROLEX CELLINI TRIPLE CALENDAR
Last year, Rolex introduced the Cellini Moonphase, a demonstration that “the Crown” can create watches with poetical or not-so-purpose-built complications. This has led us to fantasize about all sorts of traditional displays that could be incorporated:
The second version of the Rolex Cellini Triple Calendar we’ve imagined for Baselworld 2018 is a simpler variation:
The Moonphase version of the Cellini already features two essential elements of a calendar high-end watches and that’s why adding a complete calendar function, with day and month windows at 12 o’clock would make sense. It would even enhance the classical, slightly vintage look that Rolex has given to the collection.
ROLEX DAY-DATE 36
Last but not least, Rolex could come to Baselworld this year with updated versions of the Day-Date 36. In full continuity with the Day-Date 40, the 36mm model could easily be refreshed with the new case and we have imagined three versions, all of them fitted with a leather strap and crafted in three gold alloys:
Just like the 40mm version introduced in 2015, the Baselworld 2018 Rolex Day-Date 36 could receive the new generation movement with a new barrel and a gear train for a longer power reserve and a new variable inertia balance wheel.