Predictably enough, the new Rolex Oyster Perpetual Explorer 39 mm (ref. 214270 / 77200) is yet another step in the right direction for the Swiss brand that has become a poster child of the whole industry of luxury watchmaking. Delivered in a compact stainless steel case, the watch looks elegant and, at the same time, clearly means business with its no-nonsense design and bullet-proof Caliber 3132 mechanism that is known to be as accurate as it is extremely robust.
Rolex is the brand, which is usually associated with all sorts of diving watches. In fact, fifty years ago the Swiss watchmaker was among the first Swiss watchmakers that offered the general public reliable, waterproof timekeepers for skindiving: a sport that became extremely popular after the war.
However, the revered Swiss watchmaker also produces a great number of dressier timekeepers that, while retaining their sporty spirit, can easily be worn not only with jeans and polo, but also with business attire or even a formal, black tie suit.
One of these versatile models is the Rolex Oyster Perpetual Explorer 39 mm.
Previously available in a tiny (by today’s standards) size of 36 mm, the updated watch is now offered in a more masculine 39 mm case. What I like the most about this one is that you can almost instantly say that this is a Rolex: the shape of the stainless steel case, the signature hour and minute hands, even the way the Oysterlock bracelet is attached to the lugs screams Rolex!
As usual, the watch offers a very legible dial layout with a generous amount of lume put on the hour indexes and all three hands (even the second hand sports an oversized dot of Chromalight on its).
By the way, all hands are crafted not from the customary steel, but from white gold: a metal that proves to be a lot more durable and oxidation-free in the long run.
The only problem I see here is that the three Arabic numerals at 3, 6 and 9 o’clock lack any lume whatsoever, so the watch looks rather awkward in the dark.
The Rolex Oyster Perpetual Explorer 39 mm is powered by an in-house Rolex Caliber 3132 automatic movement. The caliber is equipped both with the new Parachrom hairspring, which is made of a niobium, zirconium and oxygen alloy, and the Paraflex shock absorber system. The movement is very robust and is COSC-certified as a chronometer.
The baseplate of the 3132 has a slightly larger diameter than 3130, 3135 and 3155 calibers, so it will possibly be used only in the “large” watches with diameters starting at 39 mm or so.
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Explorer 39 mm automatic watch specification
Movement: Rolex Caliber 3132, automatic, Perpetual rotor, 28,800 vph, Parachrom hairspring with Breguet overcoil,
Paraflex shock absorbers, COSC-certified chronometer
Functions: Hour, minutes
Power reserve: 48 hours
Case material: 904L Stainless steel
Bezel material: 904L Stainless steel
Bezel shape: Round
Case size: 39.00 mm
Case height: 12.00 mm
Hands: White gold
Water resistance: 100 meters
Strap: Oysterlock stainless steel bracelet
Crystal: Sapphire, AR-coated
Case back: Solid