Rolex has just made some huge changes at Watches & Wonders, the annual Geneva trade show where the top clone watch company announces its new products. Considering Rolex’s dominant position in the Swiss watch market ~29% share (2021), it’s no surprise that the watch world has been eagerly awaiting the brand’s next move. As we will soon see, these releases meet and perhaps exceed expectations.
Named after the year the brand changed its name to Rolex, the very traditional 1908 is very different from anything the brand has ever produced. This intent is first reflected in the design; inspired by the 1931 Oyster Perpetual, the simple dial features the numerals 3, 9 and 12, the classic railroad minute track, and the recessed small seconds counter. Then there is the case – 39 mm, whose size is just right for a modern formal watch.
The power reserve has also been increased to 72 hours. The movement also incorporates the latest finishing techniques found on the 1908 caliber. Excitingly, on replica Rolex watches, this improved movement can now be seen through the sapphire crystal caseback of the platinum 126506.
There has been much speculation about whether Rolex will update these collections or do away with them altogether; the brand has taken the latter approach. The move makes sense – the Cellini and Micheaux, while gaining some admirers, are two of Rolex’s least popular collections. The discontinuation of the Cellini also allowed the brand to enter the more traditional realm of Haute Horlogerie with the aforementioned 1908.
Previously, the only Rolex replica made in this material was the massive 50 mm Deepsea Challenge, a copy watch widely criticized when it was introduced last year. At 42mm in diameter, the new Yachtmaster is more versatile and retains much of the original design of the collection. However, the case and strap are significantly darker and almost entirely satin-brushed.
Three new additions have been made to the Rolex Sky-Dweller collection: a mint green dial with a Rolesor (steel and yellow gold) case and bracelet, a traditionally impressive blue-green dial with Everose yellow gold, and a white gold case with a black dial and Oysterflex bracelet. One of Rolex’s most complex movements, the caliber 9001 has been updated with new technology.