Has Rolex makde a mistake with the new 2020 Submariner?
When Rolex decided to release their new models on September 1st of 2020, the watch world went up and arms over the new releases, and probably split seconds after the announcement, prices for the Rolex Submariner “Hulk” skyrocketed on the gray market as it was discontinued when they introduced the “replacement” for it, the 126610LV Submariner Date, also called the “Cemit”. Was that a mistake?
Before answering that question, we need to reflect back and look into what actually changed with this “new Submariner date” that we have.
Color, bezel, bracelet
The first thing to notice is obviously the color. Instead of the vibrant green sunburst style, we have a shiny black dial with added Chromalight for making it readable in the dark. On top is the green bezel that we all know too well.
This is the exact same green bezel that was used on the “Hulk” that has been discontinued, with the same kind of dullish color that becomes lighter depending on the light source.
The same goes for the bracelet- a solid brushed three-link bracelet that looks smooth but not too delicate.
Black dial and green bezel, nothing really groundbreaking, giving that we have seen this before, but when you look closer on the case, you will start to notice the changes.
People started heated debates over the fact that Rolex announced that their new Submariner line is now going to be available in a 41mm diameter only, instead of the previous 40mm.
It’s hard to really imagine how those changes are going to affect the watch in real life just by reading the measurements on paper, so let’s take a closer look at some different measures.
Let’s start with the first measurement, the actual diameter– one of the few dimensions that will affect you when you wear the watch. Believe it or not, the discontinued Hulk real diameter is 40,2mm, while the new Cermit is 40,5mm.
It is hard to tell the difference, diameter wise if you don’t have a measurement device.
In terms of height, they are exactly the same- 12mm from the case back to the crystal.
The other important dimension that affects how a watch wears on your wrist is the lug to lug, which are also exactly the same, 47,6mm. So we can conclude they are both pretty much the same heigh, lug to lug, and roughly the same diameter.
The really distinguishable differences can be found at the clasp and at the lugs themselves.
The old clasp on the Hulk is slimmer with a width of 17,63mm, whereas the Cermit measures at 18,83mm on the clasp.
As we know, Rolex has reshaped the flanks and lugs of the new case, so that not only leaves us with a new silhouette but also with slimmer lugs in general because of it.
The new Cermit now measures 26,7mm which makes it almost 1mm smaller compared to the Hulk which makes it 27,55mm.
By this time it is safe to say that the 1mm increase in diameter has very little to the overall look of the watch. The culprits for the updated look are definitely the flanks which automatically lead to slimmer lugs.
Although the diameter increases on paper, it resembles more the slimmer looking Submariners from decades ago that people still love over all the time passed.
Possibly the biggest change happened behind the caseback because the Cermit has been updated with the movement, which is the 3235 which has around 70 hours of power reserve. Even though it’s the biggest change, it’s probably the least surprising as it was long overdue anyway.
So we have covered the similarities and the differences, we compared how it actually wears on the wrist, but why it is causing so much fuss? Let’s get back to the question from the beginning of the article, “Was that a mistake”?
In regards to the new case, we think that is safe to say that in regards to the new case, it is safe to say that gives its new design and silhouette it feels and looks a lot more like those vintage Submariners that many loved and it’s definitely cool to see that those changes really show on the wrist too, this is ultimately where it matters, right?
But with this one, the issue goes deeper than just the looks. Given that the Cermit is now an inherent part of the Rolex Submariner line-up, it still feels weirdly out of place.
It is simply a black dial with a hulk bezel popped on to it. It’s nothing new, not even color-wise, we have seen it before. But again, when offered at an AD, 99% would not turn it down because prices are already through the roof, and that is the whole problem. It is the reason why this release is so polarizing. It isn’t really about the color scheme in general, it is more about what it means in terms of pricing, availability, and the policies behind the Rolex game that makes people get up and arms about it, and rightfully so.
This watch has become some sort of a symbol of why many people are turning back on Rolex, but luckily for them, there are just as many, if not more who are facing the other way, so they are not going anywhere, any time soon.
Rolex could probably release lots of things without having to worry as their core fanbase seems to be absolutely unbudgeable. Another good thing is that they started to send the watches from the new release to the AD’s so they can see them earlier and know what to expect, although they are not for sale yet. It is “look, touch but don’t buy”.
Overall, time will tell if this approach turns out to be more of a success or a mistake.
We keep our eyes on the new release and will notify all of our customers as soon as we release the replica version of it.
Meanwhile, go buy yourself a replica Rolex Hulk, because as we mentioned above, the price skyrocketed because of its discontinuation.