Watch collectors around the world agree that nothing beats a vintage Rolex Submariner. Introduced in 1954 as a sporty watch for diving, the Submariner has become much more.
With so many years and models to choose from, when it comes time to purchase a Submariner, many collectors wonder
Which is the best Rolex Submariner to buy?
Rolex Submariner Models
The Submariner, a member of the Oyster Perpetual line by Rolex, went into production in 1953 and was introduced to the public in 1954.
Not all of the models had the Submariner name on the dial, nor did they use the Mercedes hands that today represent an identifier of the watch.
Through the ensuing decades, the Rolex Submariner has evolved for style, function, and movement, as you can see by the list below:
|6200||1955||Small production run, the first Submariners with the Mercedes’ hands.|
|6536||1955||Only 100 made as it was a transitional model|
|6538||1958-1961||Large crown introduction; model won by Sean Connery in his first four James Bond films, alternating between a metal and leather band.|
|5512||1959-1978||First chronometer versions|
|5513||1962-1990||Worn in Bond films, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, Live and Let Die and The Man with the Golden Gun.|
|1680||1966-1981||First with date function|
|16610LV||2003-2010||50th Anniversary Edition|
|114060||2012-||Chromalight hour markers and Maxi Case introduced|
|116610LV||2010-||Known as “the Hulk” for the green color and thicker case|
|116613LB||2009-||Case upgrade to GMT II|
For collectors, buying a Rolex Submariner is all about how rare it is, which will only increase its value in the market as the years go by. The following Rolex Submariners are considered rare and collectible:
The 50th Anniversary Edition of the Rolex Submariner was made for only seven years and was only made in small quantities. With a stunning appearance that sets it apart from the normal black bezel model, this edition will appreciate more over time.
The Submariner 5513 is a no-date watch, without chronometer certification. Though this watch was made from the 1960s into the 1980s, the longest production run of all Submariner models, it is a highly desirable model to collectors.
The Insta Ready
Rolex Submariner, for a true timepiece enthusiast, is the must-have of their collection. It is functional yet beautiful, sporty and elegant at the same time. The Rolex brand stands for luxury, and the Submariner is the most popular dive watch on Instagram.
With an overwhelmingly male demographic, the largest age group is 18 to 24-year-olds who love the Submariner. For those who love their status symbols, behold the Insta-famous models:
Nicknamed “the Hulk”, the 116610LV version of the Submariner, with its green color scheme and thicker case, is a conversation piece as well as a collectible edition of the watch. The actual diameter of the case, at 40 mm, is the same as earlier watches, but the redesigned dial and thicker lugs give it a larger, chunkier feel. Unmistakable as any other watch, the Hulk is beloved by celebrities and social media stars.
Though it is no longer made, the Submariner model 16610 is still so popular it is among the most frequently copied of all Rolex models. Featuring a diver’s bezel, date tracking, and a polished stainless steel 40 mm case and bracelet, this model is durable, sporty, and sleek, going from black tie to Great Barrier Reef easily. The price ranges are as wide as the years available, so you should be able to have your very own “Sub” no matter your budget.
Buy with confidence; find a pre-owned Rolex Submariner that has been authenticated by a staff of experts, like ours at Chronoexpert. We offer secure payment, a 12-month warranty, and a return period of 14 days if you regret your purchase. With over 7,500 watches to choose from, the Rolex Submariner of your dreams is ready and waiting.