The Rolex Submariner is the world’s most famous luxury watch. This video includes a full Rolex Submariner buyer’s guide with current market prices, an unboxing of the watch, and a comprehensive review for watch buyers. From its launch in 1953 to the 2021 model year Rolex redesign, the Submariner has reigned as the ultimate dive watch for watch collectors who desire lasting value and outstanding durability. This is the collector’s guide to the Rolex Submariner.
Rolex’s 1953 Submariner set the mold for modern dive watches. With its timing bezel, screw-down crown, stainless steel construction, and full factory bracelet, the Submariner established a design baseline for all diving watches that followed.
In 1959, the Submariner gained crown guards; the “Submariner Date” reference 1680 launched in 1966. Rolex added a sapphire crystal in 1977 with the Submariner 16800, and 2003 witnessed the arrival of the “50th Anniversary Submariner,” a Submariner Date that included the first green bezel insert in the model’s history. 2008 marked the arrival of the Rolex Submariner “Smurf”; not only did this Rolex Sub add the mode’s first series production white gold case, but it added the larger Rolex “super case” profile, the first ceramic bezel insert in Rolex Cerachrom, the first Submariner bracelet with solid end links AND solid center links, and a Glidelock adjustable Oyster clasp.
The Rolex Submariner “Hulk” debuted in 2010 as an update to the previous green Submariner “Kermit.” This stainless steel Submariner Date combined the Kermit’s green bezel with a new sunburst metallic green dial that Rolex billed as “green gold.” Rolex launched the 2021 Submariner 126610LV in 2020, and the newest evolution of the “green” Submariner combines a green ceramic bezel insert like the Hulk’s with a black lacquer dial like the Kermit’s
The latest Rolex Submariner includes a 904L stainless steel case that grows to a diameter of 41mm for 2021. Despite the increase in size, the thickness and lug-to-lug dimensions remain the same as the previous generation of the Submariner. Aesthetically, the most notable change is the increase in the size of the bracelet endlink (21mm) and the reduction in the thickness of the lugs. As a result, the newest Submariner enjoys a more harmonious balance of bracelet width to case width.
A unidirectional diving bezel with 120-click action provides a timing reference for divers or any owner who needs to keep track of an event up to 60 minutes in duration. The Rolex Triplock crown and 300-meter water resistance remain from the Submariner 116610. As with the previous Submariner, a Glidelock adjustment mechanism permits 20mm of incremental sizing adjustment in 2mm increments. Glidelock can be used as a large fold-out for use over a wetsuit or adjusted in smaller increments to fine-tune fit on the wrist.
Rolex’s caliber 3235 increased the 2021 Submariner’s power reserve from its previous 48 hours to 70s hours. The automatic caliber 3235 includes hacking seconds for precise setting against a reference time, and the movement includes a quickset date for rapid corrections. Rolex employs a Breguet overcoil hairspring that improves the watch’s consistency in any position, and Rolex’s hairspring alloy is a highly antimagnetic niobium-zirconium branded “Parachrom Blue.” Each Submariner caliber 3235 is a COSC Swiss chronometer, but Rolex adjusts the fully cased 126610LV to tolerances of plus or minus two seconds per day, and that is the basis for the term “Superlative Chronometer.”
The Rolex Submariner boxed set includes an outer cardboard sleeve, an outer box, an inner display box, a model-specific hangtag, a green “Superlative Chronometer” hangtag, an operator’s manual, and a green warranty card in a leatherette sleeve. The “green” Rolex Submariner 126610LV is priced at $9,550. When sold preowned / used, the Rolex Submariner can costs anywhere from $24,000 to $27,000.