In addition to the new Rolex Explorer 2 watch model for 2011, Rolex offers a new range of Daytona watches for men this year at the Baselworld show. 2011 is apparently the 50th anniversary of the Daytona, so we get two types of new models. Rolex is further rumored to released an overhauled Daytona for 2012. Until then we have the more standard looking model that now comes with Rolex’s very nice ceramic bezel that they call their “Cerachrom” bezel. The black bezel is a retro-nod to some older Daytona models and is in black ceramic with pink gold numerals applied with an amusing technique call “magnetron cathode sputtering.” Yes, more of that please.
The case is 40mm wide and in 18k Rolex Everose pink gold (that is said not to fade). This reference 116515LN will come on a black alligator strap for now. As is Rolex’s custom, I anticipate more models of this style coming out in the next few years, including models with a bracelet, Rolesor (two tone), and steel models. As you can see, the watch comes with both white and chocolate dials. There also seems to be the option of Arabic numeral hour markers or baton style hour markers. Hands on the dial are in matching pink gold.
Inside the watch, is the same outgoing Rolex made reference 4130 automatic chronograph movement. I believe that if Rolex makes an updated, larger Daytona watch they will fit it with a new movement. Could we see a Rolex Daytona 2 in the coming years? Trends seems to point to a “maybe” on that.
The black ceramic bezel is in line with what the GMT Master and Submariner watches now have. Rolex seems to be enjoying the pristine-looking scratch-free material enough to use it in more watches.
Aside from the new ceramic bezeled Daytona there are a few other new styles for 2011 that I think are really handsome. These are Paul Newman Daytona homages that Rolex is giving itself. Again, expect more of these in the upcoming years. My favorite model is in all 18k Everose gold, with a polished bezel and gold dial with black chronograph subsdials and red chronograph seconds hand. How nice is that? And at 40mm in width it isn’t huge, but it isn’t very small like the real vintage models. This model also comes in a two-tone variant in a similar style but with Arabic hour numerals and a slightly different palette on the dial.
Rolex is hinting here that the Daytona line will see some changes in the coming years. I don’t think they will discontinue the 40mm wide model, but I expect a new, larger Daytona with a new movement to come from the house of Rolex soon.[phpbay]rolex daytona, num, “14324”, “”[/phpbay]