Monochrome Watches
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Rolex 2014 Novelties Just The Way We Wanted Them… Almost That Is

| By Mario Squillacioti | 2 min read |
Rolex 2014 Novelites

Dear Rolex: Now that we’ve got your attention, we just want to say thank you! After years of rattling the cage of the biggest name in the industry, today we scored a major victory. The fine people at Rolex must also read because this year they decided to raid our files to produce not one, not two but three of our imagineered pieces.

Every year, around January/February the bunch of us meet up at a secret location, armed with historical photos and Photoshop! Frank (Geelen) calls the meeting to order and asks everyone for their top picks… This year we did pretty well. Here is a quick synopsis of our predictions for 2014 and the products as they have been announced at Basel.

‘Our’ Rolex GMT-Master II 116710 aka ‘Pepsi’:

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Rolex GMT-Master II Pepsi Mono

‘Their’ Rolex GMT-Master II 116719:

GMT Pepsi Press

We were off in one respect with this model. Aesthetically we were spot-on. Economically Rolex must feel that the word recession only applies to hairlines; they opted for white gold vs our stainless steel. Just for comparison: the yellow gold 116718LN is priced just above $33k USD, while the stainless steel 116710 BLNR comes for just north of $9k USD.

Our Sea-Dweller II 116600:

Rolex Sea-Dweller Mono

Their Sea-Dweller 4000 116600:

Rolex Sea-Dweller 4000 ref.116600

I suppose we missed the word “Date” from the second line of text…

Then there was the ‘throw-away’ pick; Frank said “We need one more…” and this is what we came to the table with!

‘Our’ Milgauss 116400: (in Blue)

Rolex Milgauss Mono

‘Their’ Milgauss 116400GV:

Rolex Milgauss 116400GV

I have to admit – their ‘blue’ is better than our “BLUE!” We didn’t think that they’d opt for green glass (again). Technically speaking, I don’t think the colour has much to do with the anti-magnetic properties of the watch. That said, the next time I happen to be up in the Earth’s magnetosphere, I’ll let you know how I do. Once again, thank you Rolex for listening to our wishes. Is there any way we can entice you to make a titanium Submariner for us? Please?

Post Script: Thank you Tudor for introducing the blue bezel Black Bay. While it goes without saying that our black bezel Black Bay makes more sense – the blue is a nice nod to our blue Pelagos!

PPS: We’d also like to thank the stylists at the other Swiss brand, Omega for opting to use triangular markers from the 1957 Seamaster 300. Just like we did!

6 responses

  1. Great work, congratulations! That’s an example of what keeps me coming to Monochrome. One would suspect you have an insider… 😉

  2. @Xavier. Thank you for you comment. We’re happy that you’ll keep coming. Stay tuned for the rest of our Baselworld report!

  3. A beautiful watch, but I will stay with my, almost identical, 1983 Seiko Divers 150 m. It is currently valued at about $800.00 USD, which is about $500.00 USD that I paid for it new. If I had a spare $9000.00 I would buy the Rolex GMT Master. Too bad…

  4. thanks for pre basel predcitions they were spot on, once more congrats

  5. No insider. I can promise you that.

    Nor did we hack their computers, as has been suspected vis-a-vis some petulant banter from one of the teams that did NOT pick 3 from Rolex and 1 from Omega! 😉


    Without any doubt you did a very assertive prediction. You just missed one number on the GMT Master II reference.

    The only thing is that that little number makes the price of the watch worth 4 times more than the one you predicted.

    Also, by using an ending “9” instead of a “0” Rolex makes very clear that the reference 116710 BLRO will never exist.

    Unless we imagine possible futures references in either yellow or everose gold, or a combination of these two with stainless steel (which I honestly doubt), I don’t think we will ever see a “Pepsi” Cerachrom bezel in another reference other than the new 116719 BLRO.

    Following the Rolex philosophy, they will never produce a 116710 BLRO (stainless steel), as there is no way to differentiate (at first sight) stainless steel and withe gold. Unless they change the color of the dial, in which case blue could be a good option, but I don’t think Rolex will do that as blue dials are normally linked to gold watches.

    See what happened with Submariner 116619 LB (white gold – blue dial and bezel). Rolex also produces other Submariners with blue dials and bezels, the 116618 LB (yellow gold) and the 116613 LB (yellow gold and stainless steel), but there is not (and there will never be) a 116610 LB. Because they will never produce the same colors watch in white gold and in stainless steel at the same time.

    All GMT Master enthusiastic around the world (including myself) were waiting for this watch. Rolex knew that and they took the advantage: Release it in Gold version only. If you want it, you pay for it, and their revenue goes to the moon.

    It’s a “golden” opportunity that Rolex will not refuse. As they normally do.

    Anyway, not having a stainless steel version with “Pepsi” bezel for the GMT Master it’s not the only thing we have to say good-bye due to the ceramic introduction.

    Even if this material was a “classy” choice from Rolex, it’s harder, it’s more brilliant, it’s more eternal, it brought some other disadvantages for customers.

    One of them is the disappearance of the “Coke” bezel. For those who like these colors, if Rolex decide one day to produce it in Cerachrom (something that I really doubt) it will be another Gold version, or a combination of Gold and SS. So, this is another thing we have to say good-bye.

    However, the most important thing and the one everybody will miss due to the ceramic introduction, it will be the “interchangeable bezels era” for the GMT Master.

    Even if it could be technically possible, Rolex will make sure you will never be able to do it. And if you do, the color of the 24-hours hand will betray you. So, still one more thing gone with the Cerachrom era.


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