Rolex Teases a New Steel Watch, the Likes of Which We've Never Seen

A teaser video from Rolex holds some substantive clues ahead of the brand's forthcoming drop.

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Did Rolex just tease a new steel sport watch?

Ahead of the brand's official reveal this week at Watches & Wonders in Geneva, Switzerland, Rolex posted a video on its homepage and social media that clues us into its highly anticipated 2022 lineup — including something that appears to be more than a mild update to an existing timepiece.

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At around the 10-second mark in the video, a watch's profile can be seen to feature a smooth bezel and crown guards. There's nothing in the brand's current catalog like it — in fact, nothing from the Rolex archive comes to mind, either.

So what is it? Here's our best guess ...

An All-New Air-King

Watch fans always hope to see Rolex release a groundbreaking new model, even if no one really expects it. Still, anything Rolex announces is the talk of watchtown, no matter how subtle, so this watch will be sure to turn heads.

The brand has some aging lines where the above features would handily fit. For one, the Air-King looks rather dusty and it might be retired altogether if not updated soon. Moving forward, it needs something to set it apart, and a sportier case with those crown guards could help it carve its own niche within the Rolex catalog.

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Rolex released the Air-King in 1945. The last substantial update came in 2016.
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If Rolex hadn't just updated the Explorer last year we might have guessed that, but we feel that a new Air-King is a strong bet. At the very least, we can expect that this is the brand's steel sport watch model for this year — a line under the crown logo indicates stainless steel or yellow gold, but here it's clearly the former.

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Three dots on the crown indicates Rolex’s Triplock system.
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What Other Models Are Being Teased?

The slogan "Be prepared to move skywards" also makes the aviation-themed Air-King feel likely, but a 10-year anniversary edition for the jet-setting Sky-Dweller is also expected. Those couple shots in the video of fluted bezels might very well belong to that.

At around 0:08, the video also hints at a sporty model with crown guards and a rotating bezel. If you stop the video at the right moment, you can make out what appears to be the markings of a 24-hour GMT bezel with a gray insert. The three dots under the crown indicate Rolex's Triplock system. The middle one being slightly larger would indicated that the case is in white gold, whereas all the same size would mean steel. (Yes, Rolex communicates in code.) It's a little hard to tell in the video which it is.

We still don't know much, but these tidbits get our imaginative juices flowing. All will be revealed within the next 24 hours, so stay tuned for the new releases and more from the trade show Watches & Wonders Geneva.

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Think you know what Rolex will — or should — release this year? Let us know in the comments.

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