What do we expect from Rolex other than the relentless drive to improve performance to the nth degree? After-all, the purpose of a watch is to tell the time and any reason above and beyond this basic requirement can only be from a practical perspective, merely icing on the cake.
With this in mind, have a look at the new Day-Date 40, a watch that aside from being slightly smaller (at 40mm) than the Day-Date II (41mm), largely conforms externally from what we’ve come to expect from the Day-Date name. The slightly smaller size is comfortable on the wrist and what’s more comes closer to the original Day-Date at 36mm in proportion compared to the Day-Date II that had the wider Maxi case.
The is good news for fans of the 36mm Day-Date as this new watch carries on the same visual look, but in a bigger and more modern size. Not so obvious are the small improvements in the look of the iconic President bracelet: a new concealed attachment beneath the bezel here ensures visual continuity between bracelet and case.
The fabled Day-Date has been the top of the line for Rolex ever since it was first introduced in 1956, Worn by presidents, heads of states and important men of business, it has come to symbolise, in our collective consciousness, the prototypical luxury watch, recognisable by everyone and the ultimate status symbol.
Admittedly, there is not much to report on the external aspects of the watch which in the case of Rolex is a good thing. A larger deviation from the well loved look of a Rolex is the sort of thing that will certainly have many people up in arms, given the world wide appeal of the brand, and really for many people, the design works from an aesthetic and practical point of view.
The big news then here is what is inside the new Day-Date 40, or Calibre 3255, a brand new movement promising increased precision, power reserve and resistance to shocks and magnetism.
It’s quite instructive how Rolex have with the announcement of Calibre 3255, gone for a decidedly low-key approach. Whereas other brands trumpet the release of a brand new movement to the stars (as well they should given that developing a new movement is not for the faint of heart, financially and technically), Rolex has instead emphasised the character of the Day Date more in their press materials, then telling us how the new movement can come to be of service to the basic purpose of a watch.
This approach is similar to how the Syloxi hairspring that was shown last year was announced. It was not part of the main message, but included almost like a side note. I don’t know about you, but I love this approach. It for me speaks to a sense of a single minded purpose of why they are producing these watches. There is no losing of the plot here, Rolex knows why people buy a Rolex: to serve them faithfully for life.
What’s inside, the specifics and details of the movement are merely fodder for the watch-geeks among us. After-all, the owners of Rolex watches may or not not care about the movement, but all (even the watch-geeks among them) will care that it is accurate and tough.
What the is Calibre 3255 all about then?
– Precision: Twice that of COSC chronometer certification.
– Increased power reserve: 70 hours (an improvement and increase by 24 hours from the previous Day Date movement.)
– High performance lubricants developed and synthesised in house: Allowing enhanced convenience and adjusting and winding – distinct easy to sense positions on the winding stem, unrestricted calendar correction and precise time setting.
– A brand new Escapement – the Chronergey Escapement: That improves on the traditional Swiss Lever escapement with a new geometry and new materials to improve efficiency by 15 percent.
This is certainly a long list of improvements and there were more that we haven’t even shared here. Rolex will provide more detailed information on this new calibre soon and just from what we’ve been shown, it’ll be exciting to have a closer technical look. Look out for a more detailed technical breakdown of this new movement soon, but have a look at the video below for now to get a sense of what it is all about: