Hands-on With The Hottest New Watch From Rolex, The GMT-Master II 126710GRNR

Rolex knows how to make black and grey look sexy.

As I sit here typing my thoughts away into the void, the last day of Watches & Wonders for me about to commence, I think about all the watches I’ve seen so far and all those I’ve yet to talk about or see. While we all have our favourites, and you’ll see those soon when we do our Top 10 list later on in the month, the biggest news of the show is always Rolex’s releases. Like it or not, they’re the brand people know the best, whether they’re ‘in the know’ about watches or not.

The brand’s most significant release this year is the pair of GMT-Master IIs they’ve just added to the range. I got to see the version on the Oyster bracelet (the Jubilee piece was around, but I wasn’t able to take pictures of it as I was photographing other watches at the time).

The two-tone tradition for the ceramic bezel continues here, this time with a grey and black colouration. Rolex themselves have heard people giving these the nicknames ‘Dark Knight’ and ‘Bruce Wayne’ which are very fitting in my opinion. Rolex doesn’t officially use the nicknames given, but apparently, the folks making the watches use them informally which is great. The ceramic bezels are one single piece in two different colours, a technique first mastered by Rolex many years ago with the release of the GMT-Master II 116710BLNR, it’s a highly complex task and one which Rolex is protective of.

Apart from those bezels, not much has changed. Rolex certainly knows how to market a new colour, and I’m sure the sarcasm in the comments section will be outrageous. These are still great watches, though. A 40mm Oystersteel case (with 100m water resistance) with brushing and polishing gives the GMT-Master II dressy and sporty vibes, it really is a watch you can wear anywhere. If you do plan on travelling with it, then knowing how to use the 24-hour hand and bezel to work out the time in three timezones will transform it into the perfect travel companion. Luckily, Rolex does tell you how to do this when you buy one, but we have a short explanation of it here too.

Inside the watches is the self-winding calibre 3285 which Rolex makes in-house. Thanks to the paramagnetic blue Parachrom hairspring and high-performance Paraflex shock absorbers, this movement is extremely accurate, as every Superlative Chronometer should be; Rolex says it’s accurate to within +/- 2 seconds per day after casing, which is well beyond the minimum requirements of COSC chronometers. The movement also runs for approximately 72 hours in case you’re having a really active weekend, and you don’t want it to get damaged.

These pieces look excellent and they wear as a GMT-Master II should, plus, the monochromatic theme makes these watches easy to pair with any outfit. The price for one on an Oyster bracelet is CHF10,200 and for the Jubilee bracelet, it’s CHF10,400. Rolex expects deliveries to retailers and boutiques to begin in late April/early May.