March 22, 2017
by Bilal Khan
It was just last year that Rolex refreshed their Daytona line by introducing a ceramic (or Cerachrom) bezel, and now for 2017, we see the release of the Rolex Cosmograph Daytona with ceramic bezel in white and yellow gold with a… wait for it… Oysterflex rubber strap. Yes, the Daytona is joining the ranks of the Yacht-Master which introduced the Oysterflex strap in 2015. The three versions will come in yellow gold, white gold, and Everose (the proprietary Rolex Pink gold), all of which will have the caliber 4130 movement that was upgraded to the Rolex Superlative Chronometer Certification of being accurate to +2/-2 seconds per day.
The combination of Cerachrom dial, gold, and the Oysterflex presents a refreshing of the Rolex Daytona that I’m not sure many people anticipated and we’ll really be able to give you a true reporting of the watches look like once we share our hands on images with you soon. I have a feeling there is going to be a healthy mix or “love it or hate it” extremes in opinion here, which is always something that I love.
For those not familiar with what the Oysterflex bracelet is, I’ll let our description of it from when it was introduced do the work: “The structure of the bracelet begins with a metal “blade” (a titanium nickel alloy) that creates a base shape and allows it to fit securely. One of the most interesting elements on the strap are the “fins” underneath that are designed to create a cushion between the strap and your wrist. This allows for your wrist to expand and contract a bit while the strap remains comfortable and snug, and also helps vent the inner part of the strap a bit on hot days. It is a great feeling strap made out of an ‘elastomer’ material which is connected to an 18k rose gold deployant clasp.”
Additionally, the Rolex Oysterflex strap also features the 5mm Rolex Easylink rapid extension for when you need more or less room on your wrist. So, even though Rolex refers to it as a “bracelet,” the Oysterflex is really a very high-end strap that Rolex is deciding to use on what is arguably their most iconic watch. Of course, the fact that we are seeing it on only gold watches lets us know that these won’t be the predominant style of Daytona strap anytime soon. I have a feeling that the text reading “OYSTERFLEX” down the width of the strap is going to inspire some complaining.
On the inside, the watch stays the same. The 4130 movement is accurate to +2/-2 seconds per day and has a 72-hour power reserve. The 40mm-wide oyster case is water resistant to 100M and is really just the same Daytona you know.
The Rolex Cosmograph Daytona in yellow gold ref. 116518LN is going to have a champagne dial with a sunray finish and black subdials, while the hour markers are going to be in Chromalight (aka lume) and 18k yellow gold with a black PVD coating. The hands, naturally, will be in yellow gold and Chromalight. The 18k yellow gold is also going to carry over to the safety clasp of the Oysterflex bracelet. This pattern will carry over to the white gold model ref. 116519LN and Everose gold model ref. 116515LN, as well. We’ll have a lot more for you guys once we go hands on with these pieces including exact pricing information. rolex.com