A few days earlier than the beginning of Watches and Wonders 2023, we knew that one thing elegant was cooking at Rolex. Certainly, the model’s web site wasn’t displaying anymore watches from the Cellini assortment, a variety launched in 2014 and representing the dressy aspect of the Crown. Effectively, the substitute is right here, and it takes the form of a brand new assortment named Perpetual – a reputation impressed by one of many first Rolex watches fitted with the Perpetual rotor, and in homage to the yr Hans Wilsdorf devised the identify ‘Rolex’ to signal his creations and registered the model in Switzerland (Rolex is lastly admitting that the previous could be related…) Let’s have a primary take a look at this new, and surprisingly good-looking Rolex Perpetual 1908, the primary mannequin of a set that can absolutely develop over time.
Despite the fact that Rolex doesn’t actually need to discuss it, the brand new Perpetual assortment is there to switch the Cellini vary, which has been solely discontinued proper earlier than the Geneva watch honest, together with the interesting Cellini Moonphase 50535 – a watch that I’ve at all times thought-about to be a hidden gem within the model’s portfolio. Nevertheless, if you happen to put the brand new identify apart, the Perpetual assortment is actually the direct descendant, if not a comparatively tender evolution of the Cellini. All of the design traits of the earlier vary have been stored, nevertheless, some notable modifications are to be seen on the opposite aspect of the case.
Elegant, understated but typical Rolex, the Perpetual 1908 has an unmistakable classic and traditional aptitude that’s instantly impressed by vintage fashions of the model. You’ll be able to see some references to mid-1926 Oyster watches – as an illustration the type of early Rolex Oyster watch that has been worn by Mercedes Gleitze when swimming throughout the Channel – or early Datejust from the mid-Nineteen Forties. It’s additionally a watch with modern options and sharp edges. Wonderful and properly chiselled fluting could be discovered throughout, in a discreet but signature Rolex type. So sure, it’s near a Cellini, it feels undeniably Rolex however it has a degree of refinement that the Cellini didn’t solely handle to satisfy.
This Rolex Perpetual 1908 is a simple gown watch. Time-only, compact, no issues, no pointless decorum. Straight to the purpose of magnificence. For this text, we’ve determined to try the yellow gold model with matte white dial reference 52508, which felt to me probably the most interesting. The matte black dial additionally has allure, however the heat color of gold with this tender white dial is as elegant as you may get. The case of the Perpetual 1908 is compact, at 39mm, with brief lugs, and largely a skinny profile of 9.50mm. Not ultra-thin watchmaking, however slender sufficient to suit underneath a cuff and to enter the gown watch class.
The case performs on contrasts between the tender polished surfaces of the center case and lugs, and the sharp, reflecting finely fluted accents on the bezel, the caseback and the crown. A easy recipe that can also be utilized by Patek Philippe with the Calatrava assortment, but with a Clous de Paris sample as an alternative of a fluted texture. That being stated, I can’t deny a sure resemblance between the 1908 and the Calatrava Clous de Paris 6119 (not the worst of references…) The case is water resistant to 50m (sufficient, not spectacular) with a domed sapphire crystal on prime, and in addition one on the caseback (Rolex lastly reveals its actions!)
The Perpetual 1908 is a pleasant watch on the wrist. Balanced, elegant, and discreet with sufficient luxurious, it wears like a allure. It’s fitted with an alligator leather-based strap, closed by a brand new folding clasp named Dualclasp, defined by Rolex as “fastidiously designed (…) the Dualclasp at all times sits centred on the wrist.”
The dial of the Perpetual 1908 is the place we will see many of the evolution between this new assortment and the Cellini vary. No extra rayon flammé de la gloire sample (a relatively pronounced sunray-style embossed sample). The dials, both white or black, are matte with a tremendous satin end and black printed railroad tracks for the minutes and seconds. Basic, legible, and environment friendly. Rolex additionally determined to provide its first mannequin a small-second show, and authentic palms and markers. Utilized numerals are discovered at 12, 3 and 9 o’clock, and the hour hand has an opened circle earlier than the tip – each are evocations of the sports activities watch assortment, however handled with refinement.
The large information comes from the again, and that unprecedented motion is now seen. Named calibre 7140, this new engine is a fairly spectacular mixture of previous, current and future. Basic in its structure, with a central rotor, a skinny profile, seen ratchet wheel and barrel, it additionally brings to the desk all the model’s applied sciences. This automated motion is wound by a stable 18k perpetual rotor mounted on a ball bearing, and it incorporates the patented Chronergy escapement made from anti-magnetic nickel-phosphorus, the Syloxi hairspring, produced by Rolex from silicon with a patented geometry, and a stability wheel with variable inertia and gold Microstella nuts.
All of that’s protected by a transversing bridge with Paraflex shock absorbers. Beating at 28,800 vibrations/hour, the motion shops a snug 66-hour energy reserve. And since it’s seen underneath a sapphire caseback, Rolex has made a particular effort on the ornament, with the brand new Rolex Côtes de Genève – a ornament that differs from conventional Côtes de Genève for the slight polished groove between every band – and diamond-cut chamfers on the bridges.
Availability & Worth
The Rolex Perpetual 1908 is now obtainable from retailers and is a part of the everlasting assortment. The mannequin offered right here (reference 52508) is priced at EUR 21,850. For extra particulars, please seek the advice of rolex.com.
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