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August 21, 2011 / kevinhoa

New Rolex Explorer II (ref. 216570)

Rolex is the popular kid back in school, everyone waiting to see what cool thing they will do next. Enter the long awaited and once delayed Rolex Explorer II (ref. 216570) unveiled officially at Basel 2011. There has been big changes to this model when compared to the previous generation (ref. 16570) from size, movement, to aesthetics.

Probably the biggest visual change is Rolex continued move to larger cases. The Explorer II is now 42mm compared to the previous version at 40mm. W&R thinks this is better fit because the watch wears smaller in general do to the lower profile bezel. The new case will beef it up, without being obnoxious. Rolex went back to the vintage Explorer look with the new orange GMT hand. This gives the Explorer the extra little touch it needed to help further separate it from the GMT Master II. The dial now has larger, more pronounced hands. The bracelet has also moved forward with positive change, now featuring Rolex’s patented EasyLink system. This allows the wearer to change the bracelet length by about 5mm, weather and physical activities can all effect wrist size. The EasyLink system is truly a fantastic feature. Rolex has put a brand new GMT chronometer movement in the 216570, called Caliber 3187. The Caliber 3187 features a blue Parachrom hairspring and the new Paraflex shock absorbers. The new chapter ring that we all knew was inevitable has the repeating “Rolex”. There seems to be no stopping this evolution, if you want modern Rolex’s you better get use to liking this change. The watch is offered in white or black, will be nice to see these out in the real world.
Overall, the new Explorer II looks to have done almost everything right, especially the old 1970’s orange GMT hand.


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