Introducing the 2016 Rolex Explorer 214270, with new hands and new indexes (Live Photos & Price)

For this 2016 edition of Baselworld, fans of Rolex are – with good reasons – mainly focusing on the introduction of a new Daytona in steel, now with a black ceramic bezel. However, there’s more from Rolex to this year (in fact, there’s a lot). Rolex will indeed discreetly correct some of the aspects people complained about on the Rolex Explorer 214270 (the 39mm with 3-hands), mainly focusing on a more relevant display. New hands, new indexes, all with improved proportions; this is what you’ll have with the 2016 Rolex Explorer 214270. And here is our hands-on.

the 2016 Rolex Explorer still is an Explorer, with its timeless appeal
the 2016 Rolex Explorer still is an Explorer, with its timeless appeal

Some collectors complained about the increased size of the Rolex Explorer, when it moved from 36mm to 39mm with the ref. 214270. However, this diameter remains reasonable and elegant enough – and after a few years, people get used to these 3 extra millimeters. The main problem that collectors saw with this reworked Explorer 1 was the size of the hands. Both were too short compared to the dial and mainly, the minute hand was not relevant, as the tip of the hand wasn’t touching the minute track.

Same treatment has been applied on the hour hand, which is now a little bit longer. Both hands are also slightly larger. Overall, even if the dial looses some lightness with these fatter hands, it also becomes more convenient and more rational, as the hands are now long enough for the diameter of the dial.

its superlative comfort on the wrist and its iconic dial, which just feels more rational than ever… and as for the look of the new hands
its superlative comfort on the wrist and its iconic dial, which just feels more rational than ever… and as for the look of the new hands

The second evolution concerns the iconic 3 – 6 – 9 indexes – certainly the most important part of the Explorer – that are now also coated with blue Chromalight luminous material, just like the rest of the indexes and the hands (as a reminder, the previous edition of the Rolex Explorer 214270 was featuring plain steel, polished 3 – 6 – 9 indexes). If the day-time look will remain close, it will on the other hand bring a better legibility in low light conditions – then again with the idea of a more rational display in mind.

The rest of the watch remains similar, meaning that the 2016 Rolex Explorer 214270 still features its 39mm Oyster case, in 904L stainless steel, water resistant to 100m, with flat and polished bezel and a 3-link Oyster bracelet with brushed surfaces and the Oysterlock clasp, with Easylink adjustment.

now with a black ceramic bezel. However, there’s more from Rolex to this year
now with a black ceramic bezel. However, there’s more from Rolex to this year

Finally – and this shouldn’t be underestimated – the 2016 Rolex Explorer 214270 features the same improvements than the 2016 Rolex Daytona in terms of precision of the movement, meaning that it has the Superlative Chronometer certification, done in-house by Rolex and with stricter criteria (-2/+2 seconds per day). It also is guaranteed for 5 years.

The 2018 Rolex Oyster Pereptual Datejust 36

Having recovered from the jubilation following the release of the steel GMT Master II Pepsi during Baselworld 2018, we can now turn our attention to another candidate in the classic Oyster Perpetual Datejust 36 line that is out to conquer the hearts of men… and women. Housed in a two-tone Everose Rolesor case (combination of steel and pink gold), Rolex has fitted the watch with its new-generation calibre 3235 and given the case some design tweaks. Handsome and refined with just the right touch of luxurious rose gold, practical for everyday wear and tear, robust and ready for action sports yet with enough style to work as a casual dress watch… what’s not to love about the Datejust 36? So, a word of warning to all you boyfriends out there: do not leave this watch unattended.

As the first automatic waterproof chronometer wristwatch to display the date in a window at 3 o’clock on the dial
As the first automatic waterproof chronometer wristwatch to display the date in a window at 3 o’clock on the dial

What woman hasn’t borrowed her boyfriend’s shirt, his jeans or snuggled up in his large cashmere sweater? The phenomenon of women poaching things from their boyfriends has trickled all the way down to the watch industry with more and more gender-fluid proposals. Chanel tapped into the trend and went as far as designing the BoyFriend watch for women (and we know that when it comes to creating trends, Chanel knows one or two tricks). Designed to look like a man’s dress watch that women would want to steal, the success of this watch has been extraordinary and a reverse effect in happening as more and more men are succumbing to the model, including the sophisticated skeletonised version of Chanel’s BoyFriend.

he Datejust has been going strong since its launch in 1945. The model we are looking at here is a Rolesor.
he Datejust has been going strong since its launch in 1945. The model we are looking at here is a Rolesor.

Surprisingly, coming from the bastion of conservative Swiss watchmaking, Rolex has always known that men’s sports watches would be adopted by women and has responded by releasing the Oyster Perpetual in five different sizes, from 39mm to 26mm to make sure nobody’s wrist is overlooked. For the record, when Rolex introduced its revolutionary waterproof Oyster case in 1926, it was put to the test on the wrist of a young Englishwoman – Mercedes Gleitze – to accompany her on her epic cross-Channel swim of 1927.

the term Rolex gives to watches that combine gold and steel. First introduced on the Datejust model in 1948.
the term Rolex gives to watches that combine gold and steel. First introduced on the Datejust model in 1948.

What makes this Datejust 36 such a perfect boyfriend watch – compared to the other two variations on the Datejust 36 theme with diamonds and louder dials – is its tempered masculinity (Rolex presented three Datejust 36 models during Baselworld 2018, including two with diamonds – see them here). It is masculine, but not butch and will look great on a woman’s wrist. Like a crisp white shirt, the white lacquered dial looks impeccably smart and confident, and the thick, pink gold Roman numerals give it a classic, authoritative spirit. In my book, this model is quintessential elegant Rolex and displays all the right markers of its heritage.

The new TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 16 Chronograph Baselworld 2018

The TAG Heuer Carrera Heuer 02 Chronograph comes exclusively in a 43mm wide case – note that there will be a 45mm version with a GMT function that TAG Heuer hints at in their press release, but doesn’t tell us more for the time being. Rumor has it, the new Heuer 02 will replace the 43mm Heuer-01, while the 45mm Heuer-01 will continue to live on. This, neatly, leads us to the movement: the Heuer-02, which we have seen in the generally well-received Autavia (reviewed here), marks the long-forgotten CH80’s return and now finds its way into the Carrera collection.

TAG HEUER PRESENTS A NEW VERSION OF ITS IN-HOUSE MOVEMENT WITH A GMT FUNCTION. A TOOL MATCHING THE YOUNG GENERATION’S HUNGER FOR TRAVEL AND ADVENTURE.
TAG HEUER PRESENTS A NEW VERSION OF ITS IN-HOUSE MOVEMENT WITH A GMT FUNCTION. A TOOL MATCHING THE YOUNG GENERATION’S HUNGER FOR TRAVEL AND ADVENTURE.

TAG Heuer—all part of LVMH watch division under the direction of Jean-Claude Biver. Today we take a look at some of the new 2018 TAG Heuer releases and unsurprisingly, there’s a mixed bag of mechanical timepieces, ladies’ watches, and smartwatches in the lineup.

The case has a solid construction with a solid case back which is engraved with the TAG logo and a depiction of a checkered flag symbolizing TAG Heuer’s commitment to motorsports.

Review of the TAG Heuer Formula 1 Chronograph Model
Review of the TAG Heuer Formula 1 Chronograph Model

The F1 series is traditionally geared towards motorheads and racing enthusiasts but they also thought about adding some water resistance for everyone else. Although 200m/660ft is not enough for any serious diving, you can wear it in the shower or take it swimming and other similar types of exposure to water.

The second time zone, an ultra-practical feature that can be adjusted with the crown, is read using the lacquered red hand and the black and blue ceramic bezel, which has a 24-hour GMT scale.There was something about how the almost-azure dial and orange-red highlights contrasted that really stood out for me. Overall, it’s an inspired vintage take that doesn’t feel overly antiquated or bland.

TAG Heuer also released a sporty black and red model on a motorsport-inspired
TAG Heuer also released a sporty black and red model on a motorsport-inspired

To ensure optimum legibility, the GMT hand has been ingeniously mounted in a secondary position — between the hour and minute hands — enabling it to pass over the indexes and skim the GMT scale.

New Rolex Models at Baselworld 2018

For the first time since its introduction, Rolex is offering the stainless steel Rolex GMT-Master II (126170BLRO) with a ceramic bezel in the legendary blue and red ‘Pepsi’ configuration. Ever since the updated GMT-Master II appeared on the market in 2008, many people have wanted to see a steel version of the watch with the famous Pan Am colors. And while many people were speculating that Rolex would reveal the ‘Coke’ version (black and red bezel) at Baselworld 2018, the brand instead reintroduced the classic configuration that started the legend.

The 40mm Oyster Perpetual GMT-Master II features a bi-directional rotatable bezel.
The 40mm Oyster Perpetual GMT-Master II features a bi-directional rotatable bezel.

This watch features the iconic two-tone ceramic bezel, familiar from the white gold GMT-Master II that was released in 2014. With the introduction of the steel version with the Pepsi bezel, Rolex has also decided to quietly change the dial color from black to blue on the white gold version.

The new stainless steel version features a redesigned Jubilee bracelet and the newly developed Rolex caliber 3285. With the launch of the new Jubilee bracelet, Rolex is bringing back an iconic GMT Master look. Though there are many fans of the Jubilee bracelet, it will be interesting to see whether Rolex introduces a version with the Oyster bracelet sometime in the future.

New Rolex GMT Master II Pepsi in white gold 116719BLRO, Image: Rolex
New Rolex GMT Master II Pepsi in white gold 116719BLRO, Image: Rolex

In addition to the stainless steel version with the classic Pepsi dial, Rolex also announced a bicolor GMT-Master II in 18k rose gold and stainless steel as well as a solid 18-karat rose gold version. Both versions feature the newly introduced black and brown ceramic bezel, the same Rolex caliber 3285, and the Oyster bracelet as seen in the GMT-Master II.

The new divers’ watch, Rolex Deepsea, features the calibre 3235 for the first time. The calibre has a blue Parachrom hairspring which is up to 10 times more precise than a traditional hairspring in case of shock.

Oyster Perpetual Rolex Deepsea
Oyster Perpetual Rolex Deepsea

The 44mm-diametre divers’ watch features redesigned lugs and sides with a broader bracelet. The watch is water-resistant to 3,900 metres and comes with a 70-hour power reserve.