As you might have heard, Rolex introduced a new steel version of their ceramic Pepsi bezel GMT today at Baselworld 2018.
The new Oyster Perpetual GMT-Master II has the same case diameter as before at 40 mm, and the bezel is the same ceramic Pepsi-colored version that was introduced with the white gold GMT-Master II in 2014, there are however a few notable changes apart from the fact that it’s now available in stainless steel.
There is a Jubilee bracelet with five-piece solid steel links, with polished center links, satin-finished outer links with polished edges, and a 5mm Easylink comfort extension. Additionally, the case lugs and sides have been subtly redesigned, and there is an all-new GMT movement. Other than that the watch still has the same 18K white gold applied hour markers and 18K white gold hands, with blue Chromalight luminescence, the same red GMT hand, solid screw-down caseback with fine fluting, screw-down Triplock crown, and 100 meters of water-resistance.
Also worth mentioning in more detail is the new caliber 3285 movement which beats at 4Hz and has bidirectional automatic winding. This in-house Rolex movement is the subject of 10 patents (over the course of its development), features bidirectional winding, -2/+2 rate accuracy after casing, and is endowed with a paramagnetic blue Parachrom hairspring, Rolex overcoil, large balance wheel with variable inertia with 4 Microstella nuts for precision regulation, Paraflex shock absorbers, traversing balance bridge, Chronergy escapement with optimized energy efficiency the nets a 15% improvement, and a paramagnetic nickel-phosphorous pallet fork and escape wheel. The power reserve is now 70-hours, up from 48-hours.
Despite all these technical accouterments associated with the new movement, the GMT-Master II still functions the same. The local time is displayed via the three conventional central hands, which are also tied to the date. And the second time zone (home/reference time) is displayed in 24-hour format via the red GMT hand which circles the dial once every 24-hours. The bezel can also be used to show day/night in the home/reference time zone, or another. The setting of both time zones and the date is controlled via the crown, and the conventional (local) hour hand jumps hours without hacking the movement.
Retail will be approximately $9,000. (Ref. 126710BLRO) Learn more at Rolex.