Rolex is probably the most well-known watch brand there is. The brand was founded in 1905 by German engineer and businessman Hans Wildorf. Rolex is said to be a meaningless name, but some say it is derived from the French words: horlogerie-exquise.
Rolex became famous for its oyster case, this was the first waterproof (and shock-resistant) case, invented in 1926. Most Rolex models still have such an oyster case that is water-resistant. Rolex is known for its publicity stunts, such as having someone swim from England to France with a Rolex to prove its water resistance. Later, Rolex designed one of its watches to go to the deepest part of the ocean, about 11 kilometers down. In 1960, the watch went down with a submarine and it even proved to be water-resistant at 11 kilometers deep.
After moving to Geneva in World War II, Rolex began to focus on designing high-end luxury watches, they became famous for designs that still form the basis of their collection today, for example, the Datejust, Daytona and Submariner. Each of these watch families has been in production for over 50 years and shows no signs of slowing down.
This is a list of the most well-known Rolex models:
The Cellini is a typical dress watch, it is usually made of gold and it differs from the typical rugged Rolex style.
Rolex Oyster Perpetual
The Oyster Perpetual is one of the simplest watches of Rolex, it is essentially a no-date, simple watch in the distinctive Rolex Oyster case.
The Rolex Airking, as the name suggests, is a tribute to aviation pioneers. It is a fairly simple watch, similar to the Oyster Perpetual, but with some design differences. A vintage Rolex Airking is a fairly accessible entry into the vintage watch world, especially when you consider that you get a Rolex.
The explorer is similar to the Airking, a simple steel watch that is designed with a specific audience in mind, in this case, explorers. Vintage Explorers are fairly simple but cool watches, offering the quality that Rolex is known for. The Vintage Rolex Explorer is a great budget pick for vintage Rolex watches.
The date, as the name suggests, is the most prominent feature. The Datejust was actually the first wristwatch with a date, prominently displayed with a magnifying glass.
Rolex Day Date
The Day Date is incredibly similar to the date, except it has a prominent day display. Additionally, it also differs in the fact that this watch is only produced in precious metals, and as such is a much more valuable piece.
This watch is similar to the Submariner, with a large date window with a magnifying glass and a rotating bezel. The defining feature of the GMT-Master however is the fact that it has a rotating bezel with hour markings, allowing for time to be seen in multiple locations.
The Rolex Submariner is perhaps the most iconic Rolex watch, and perhaps the watch that some people picture when they hear the word watch. It is a dive watch, with a rotating bezel to keep time underwater. Additionally, it comes with a distinctive date indication with the characteristic Rolex magnifying glass.
The Rolex Sea-Dweller is the big brother of the Submariner, it is essentially a Submariner built for deeper depths.
The Yachtmaster is a sports watch from Rolex that was first introduced in 1992. It is functionally similar to the Submariner but has a different design.
The Daytona is one of the most famous Rolex models, the most expensive wristwatch ever sold at auction was a Rolex Daytona belonging to Paul Newman. The Daytona is a chronograph with a tachymeter bezel to measure speed. The Daytona was intended for racing and is even named after the Daytona races that Paul Newman often participated in.
The Rolex Milgauss is another watch that is intended for a specific audience. The Milgauss was made for the scientific community, it was the first watch of its kind to be resistant to magnetic fields up to 1000 gauss. Essentially, the watch is shielded from magnetic fields to protect the movement.
Why is Rolex considered a status symbol?
Rolex is considered a status symbol for a few reasons. First, Rolex is a luxury brand that has a reputation for making high-quality watches. Their watches are made with precision and attention to detail, and they use only the finest materials. Second, Rolex has a long history and has been associated with luxury and success for many decades. Finally, Rolex has a certain prestige and exclusivity, as their watches are often very expensive and not easily accessible to everyone. All of these factors contribute to the perception of Rolex as a status symbol.