Baselworld, the biggest watch event of the year, is happening now at the Messe Basel in Basel, Switzerland. We’ve got a team on the ground there to bring you the most exciting releases. Follow our coverage here, and also be sure to check out Instagram. We’ll be posting to our feed throughout the week.
Movement & Winding: Rolex in-house 3235 automatic
Case Dimensions: 42mm thick; white gold
Power Reserve: ~70 hours
Quick Take: Rolex’s big announcements for Baselworld 2019 include the new Yacht-Master 42 ref. 226659, upsized to 42mm in white gold. Two millimeters may seem like a small matter, but Rolex is known for conservative, incremental evolutions. Those 2mm help give the Yacht-Master that little bit more wrist presence it probably deserves — and also help it stand out more from the popular Submariner.
Who It’s For: The Yacht-Master is visually similar to the Rolex Submariner in many ways but with a more elegant vibe in comparison to its no-nonsense dive-watch sibling. Its place is more aboard the yacht — with its lighter splash- or even wave-ready 100m of water-resistance — than beneath the sea. In white gold, the new Rolex Yacht-Master 42 is also more exclusive — and since white gold can look like steel, it’s a good option for those who wish to be more subtle about their spending habits.
Key Features: The 2mm increase over the previous version might sound almost negligible, but the watch world at large perhaps realizes the significance of this subtle change. At 42mm wide, the new Rolex Yacht-Master 42 should have a distinctly more prominent, contemporary profile on the wrist. Seated in a white gold case, the bidirectional rotating bezel has Rolex’s Cerachrom ceramic for the insert. With Chromalight-lumed markers and hands, the Yacht-Master 42 is also notable for being totally monochromatic, whereas man of its cousins from the Crown feature a contrasting color on the dial, such as red.
The Rolex Yacht-Master 42 is powered by Rolex’s in-house 3235 automatic movement with around 70 hours of power reserve. It is chronometer-certified, of course, but Rolex promises an even better accuracy of -2/+2 seconds per day. It also comes on an “Oysterflex” rubber strap with Rolex’s excellent “Oysterclasp” folding clasp — perfect for use on the open seas.