The Submariner is undoubtedly one of the most popular watches from Swiss luxury giant Rolex. In terms of sales on Chrono24, this famous diver far outpaces other iconic Rolex models like the GMT-Master or Daytona. The markedly more affordable Datejust is the only Rolex that outsells the famous Sub.
Today, we’re taking a closer look at the reference 114060, a so-called Sub No Date. This watch was a fixture in the Rolex catalog from 2012 to 2020, and is by far the most popular no-date Submariner on our marketplace. The ref. 114060 is a modern take on the very first Submariner from 1954. The original watch didn’t feature a date function, which is why purists generally consider no-date models to be the only true Submariners. The ref. 114060 is no exception; it offers the classic design of the original model and refines it with contemporary features.
What sets the ref. 114060 apart?
As is the case with all no-date Submariners, the ref. 114060 is housed in a stainless steel “Super Case.” This 40-mm case has a much more solid look than previous no-date models due in part to the significantly larger crown guard surrounding the screw-down Triplock crown. Moreover, the lugs are much wider and have a slightly more pronounced edge than previous designs. That being said, the lug-to-lug width remains 20 mm, meaning the Oyster bracelet appears narrower and the case larger on the wrist. It’s also worth mentioning that for the first time in the history of the Submariner No Date, the lugs are not drilled.
The three-row bracelet is satin brushed on the top and polished on the sides. It tapers gently toward the clasp, ensuring a comfortable fit. Compared to previous models, Rolex has made the fold-over safety clasp much slimmer and outfitted it with their Glidelock system. The latter allows the wearer to continuously adjust the length of the bracelet with very little effort. If your wrist swells or shrinks during the day due to fluctuating temperatures, for example, a quick adjustment of the clasp is enough to ensure a perfect fit.
The Genevan manufacturer equips the ref. 114060 with a so-called Maxi dial to match its “Maxi” case. The dial has larger indices than previous versions. The white gold applied indices are filled with white luminous material that glows blue in the dark, as are the hands. Despite this change, Rolex did not overhaul the basic dial design. Consistent with the original, this watch has bar indices at 3, 6, and 9 o’clock and an upside-down triangle at 12 o’clock; all the other hour markers are round. Overall, the black dial looks very clean and balanced, in large part due to the lack of a date window at 3 o’clock disturbing the symmetry. This likewise means there is no need for a date magnifier on the sapphire crystal, which only enhances the tidy look of this watch even further.
The unidirectional diving bezel is also black and features Rolex’s Cerachrom ceramic inlay as opposed to the traditional aluminum. Cerachrom is a particularly scratch-resistant material that will not fade in sunlight, which was the case with earlier models. The numbers and markings on the 60-minute scale are engraved in the bezel and coated with a platinum PVD layer.
The ref. 114060 is powered by the in-house Rolex caliber 3130. The 3130 was used in 2001’s Submariner ref. 14060M and is considered a particularly reliable movement. It runs at 28,800 vibrations per hour (A/h) and offers a 48-hour power reserve. Rolex certifies the movement as a “Superlative Chronometer,” meaning it is incredibly accurate and deviates from the standard time by no more than +2/-2 seconds per day.
The ref. 114060 employs a revised version of this movement with a Parachrom hairspring. Parachrom is a zirconium-niobium alloy developed by Rolex in-house. The blue-tinged material is impervious to strong magnetic fields and temperature fluctuations. Unfortunately, you can’t view the component at work due to the watch’s stainless steel screw-down case back. This is a real shame considering how the decorative finishing on the movement’s bridges, the partially skeletonized rotor, and rhodium-plated gears are unquestionably a sight to behold.
Ref. 114060 Alternatives
There are several other Submariner models that make good alternatives to the reference 114060. For example, the former model, the ref. 14060M, is an interesting choice for anyone who finds the ref. 114060 a bit too bulky and can do without the Maxi dial and Cerachrom bezel. As mentioned, this watch is also powered by the caliber 3130, although it features a Nivarox rather than a Parachrom hairspring.
There are actually two versions of the ref. 14060M in circulation. The first version is known to fans and collectors as the “Two Liner,” while later models are known as the “Four Liner.” The nicknames refer to the text on the dial at 6 o’clock. While older watches feature “Submariner” and “1000 ft = 300 m” written in two lines, later versions also include “Superlative Chronometer” and “Officially Certified.”
In September 2020, Rolex replaced the ref. 114060 with the ref. 124060. These all-new Submariners are barely distinguishable from their predecessors at first glance; however, if you take a closer look, there are some obvious changes. To start, the stainless steel case has grown to a diameter of 41 mm and the lugs are slightly narrower. The lug width has also grown to 21 mm, giving the Oyster bracelet a more balanced, proportional look. The black Maxi dial and black Cerachrom bezel have both remained unchanged.
The most important change, however, involves the movement. The state-of-the-art caliber 3230 powers this watch. In addition to the updated Parachrom hairspring, this movement features the Paraflex shock protection system and the über-efficient Chronergy escapement. The power reserve has also increased to 70 hours.
Do you like the look of the Submariner ref. 114060, but prefer watches with date displays? If so, the Submariner Date 116610LN (Lunette Noir) may be the perfect watch for you. The watches are nearly identical with the same case, bezel, and dial, bar the date window at 3 o’clock and the iconic Rolex Cyclops lens, of course. The lens in the sapphire crystal magnifies the date display by 2.5 times. Even the movement – the caliber 3135 – only differs from the caliber 3130 by the addition of the date function.
If you’d prefer a bit more color on your wrist, take a look at the ref. 116610LV (Lunette Verde). This watch features a green bezel and dial, earning it the nickname the “Hulk.” The Hulk does not differ from its black sister model in any way other than its color scheme.
Price and Performance of the Submariner Ref. 114060
Prices for the Submariner ref. 114060 have increased significantly over the past two years. In 2018, you could find unworn models on Chrono24 for less than 7,000 EUR (approx. 8,300 USD). Prices have been climbing steadily ever since, especially after Rolex announced this reference would be replaced by the ref. 124060. As of October 2020, mint condition ref. 114060 models are selling for 10,700 EUR (approx. 12,700 USD) on our platform. Pre-owned watches are even hitting the 10,000 EUR (approx. 11,900 USD) mark, and trends are definitely heading in an upwards trajectory.
It’s a similar story with the ref. 14060M. Over the past two years, prices have risen from 8,500 EUR (approx. 10,100 USD) to more than 12,000 EUR (approx. 14,250 USD), an increase of nearly 30 percent. Well-maintained used watches are slightly more affordable and sell for around 8,100 EUR (approx. 9,600 USD) on Chrono24.
The ref. 124060 from 2020 has an official list price of 8,100 USD; however, to get your hands on a watch at that price from an official retailer, you would have to wait for ages. If you don’t have the patience that requires, expect to pay a hefty premium. Current prices for a new watch online range from 11,000-15,000 EUR (approx. 13,000-18,000 USD).