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History of the Rolex Hulk

The Rolex Hulk is a version of the iconic Submariner timepiece. It gets its nickname from its green dial and bezel. The history of the Rolex Hulk is rather short as the watch is relatively new compared to other prized Rolex Watches.

This green colour aspect to the 11610LV Rolex Submariner made an immediate impact, and the watch has gone on to become highly sought-after.

Here, we explore the history of the Hulk as part of the Submariner range and as an instant design classic in its own right. We’ll also look at the value it commands as a collectable.

What is the History of the Rolex Hulk?

Rolex first released the Hulk in 2010. Green as a colour isn’t new to Rolex. It’s the colour of the Rolex wording in the company’s logo, sitting beneath the familiar Rolex crown.

However, until it released the Hulk, Rolex had only green as a colour in one other of its watch designs, the so-called Kermit. This watch had the reference 1610LV. It had a distinctive green bevel. It was released in 2003 to commemorate the Submariner’s 50th anniversary.

The Hulk has a similar reference number and has a green dial as well as a green bezel. It’s a successor to the Kermit but also represents a stylistic shift and a bold design statement. This felt significant. Rolex is a brand generally known for the steadfastness and sense of continuity in its watch designs.

Most modifications and updates that Rolex makes to its collections are incremental and subtle.

While it was true that the Hulk continued with the Kermit’s green bezel, it took things much further with its green dial.

Of course, the history of the Rolex Hulk goes back much further than 2010, and further back still than the Rolex Kermit in 2003.

Its history is an inextricable part of the story of the Submariner watch.

History of the Rolex Submariner

Rolex launched its first Submariner watch in 1954. The exact reference number of this first model isn’t clear, but it would have been either 6204 or 6205.

It was the first watch to be water-resistant up to 1,000 feet or 300 metres. The watch went into production in 1953 and the company unveiled it at the Basel Watch Fair the following year.

These very early Submariners didn’t have the customary hour hand with the triple-sectioned round symbol on it.

Other 6200 series Submariners followed, followed by two distinct types, those that included a chronometer and those that didn’t.

In the mid-1960s, the Rolex Submariner switched from silver-gilt dials to white detailing and incorporated a date window for the first time.

During this time, the watch had shifted from being a purely specialist model to having a more mass-market appeal. Some part of this is probably due to its appearance in several James Bond films. As Bond, Sean Connery wore a Rolex in the first four films of the series.

The Submariner went on to feature in various subsequent Bond films.

Later models began to include fresh modifications and refinements to the basic Submariner design.

These changes were minor but did introduce improvements. One example was the replacement of the plexiglass crystal with sapphire crystal. The crown changed to become the Triplock crown, already used on the Sea Dweller watch range.

Various combinations came in, such as the 16808 in solid 18-carat gold, available with either a blue bezel or blue bezel and dial.

The 16803 was the first Submariner to combine gold and steel in its design.

Contemporary Submariner models have improved the watch’s water resistance and made minor changes to its appearance.

The various adjustments and improvements to the Submariner collection that Rolex has made over the years have contributed to the value of these watches.

Submariners are hugely popular and the rarity value of the scarcer vintage and discontinued models continues to rise. This makes them a good investment.

Why is a Rolex Hulk a Good Investment?

Prices of the Rolex Hulk have continued to rise consistently. There will be variations depending on the dealer you buy it from, and which country you buy it in.

But generally, this continues to be a desirable timepiece that many see as being very collectable.

Consequently, if you buy a Rolex Hulk now, the longer you hang onto it, the more valuable it’s likely to become.

That makes it a good investment.

This is also against a wider backdrop of rising demand for Rolex watches. The collectable Rolex market soared during lockdown.

  • Sales of watches in the UK that were priced over £10,000 increased by over 10% during 2020.
  • China imported 11% more Swiss watches during the Pandemic.
  • Rolex models are the top five searched-for watches.

Of the different watch models Rolex has, the Submariner may well be the most famous, where it is essentially a brand of its own.

What makes the Hulk so distinctive in the Submariner collection?

This is a watch design known for its consistency and continuity. Most of the fundamental elements present in the very first Submariner are still part of the contemporary designs.

But the prominent green design elements of the Hulk add something new and unexpected to this design consistency.

This gives owners of the 11610LV the best of both worlds. They can enjoy a watch that has all the established attributes of the Submariner design but with the added element of something very fresh.

But there’s a further twist in the tale when it comes to the investment value of the Submariner Hulk.

You cannot buy a new one.

Is the Rolex Hulk Discontinued?

The short answer is yes. As of 2020, Rolex is no longer manufacturing the green watch with the 11610LV reference number.

This announcement alone has sent prices for this watch soaring, even before Rolex’s decision came into effect.

The Hulk had customer waiting lists of between two and three years at many authorised Rolex dealers.

This has meant that even before the watch was discontinued, many people were buying the Hulk on the secondary market.

Now those secondary market prices have risen significantly.

What Happened To The Rolex Hulk?

Rolex made certain changes to its Submariner range, this included making all models 41mm rather than 40mm.

It also updated its Oyster bracelet and improved the watch’s movement. This new, improved movement is the 3235 calibre. This will ensure that the Rolex Submariner can compete more effectively with other marine watch brands such as the Omega Seamaster and Planet Ocean.

What this change means for Rolex is that the Hulk is now outdated.

This doesn’t mean that Rolex has given up on green in its Submariner designs, however. There’s a new Kermit with the number 126610LV. Like the 2003 model, it has a green bezel on a black dial.

Currently, therefore, the green-on-green of the Hulk design is unique.

Is the Rolex Hulk Collectable?

With the enormous popularity of this model when it was still in production, and now its limited availability as a discontinued version, the Hulk stands to become increasingly collectable.

But how collectable is it if you bought one today?

This watch is now firmly established as a modern classic in the Submariner’s long history. Interest and prices soared sky-high once Rolex announced it was discontinuing this timepiece.

There’s no sign of either this interest or demand dissipating. If green’s your thing, then compared to the original 2003 Kermit, the Hulk has improved features, plus that stunning green dial.

The Hulk may be outdated technically by the new Rolex Submariner specifications, but you’re still looking at a watch with a superior calibre 3135 movement, tested for accuracy to exceptionally high standards.

Plus, there are the collectable characteristics that come with all Submariner watches.

  • They’re highly durable, with cases like protective bank vaults. Rolex uses its special 940L Oystersteel blend in these watches, cast in its own foundry. This is way above the industry standard.
  • The Oysterclasp on the bracelet of the Submariner keeps it securely fixed to your wrist and it looks as good as the rest of the watch.

Own a Rolex 11610LV Hulk and you own a design classic with a perfect pedigree and a collectable value that can only go in one direction, upwards.

How Much Does A Rolex Hulk Cost?

Given that all Rolex Hulks will now come through the secondary market, prices may fluctuate considerably.

Currently, prices for the Hulk can range in thousands of pounds from the high teens to the mid-twenties, but these prices won’t remain static.

This is a demand-driven market, with a finite supply. If you’re going to buy a Rolex Hulk, the longer you leave it, the more you’re very likely to end up paying.

Where Can I Buy a Rolex Hulk?

The Rolex Hulk is a popular model and, unfortunately, this means that along with genuine models, there are plenty of fakes on the market.

Given that the only way you can buy a Hulk now is through the secondary market for pre-owned and vintage timepieces, you need to tread carefully.

We can’t recommend strongly enough that you only buy your Rolex from a trusted dealer. While it’s true you can do your own checks on the authenticity of your watch, a good dealer will ensure, from the outset, that you’re only getting the genuine article.

Another factor to consider is how easy it’ll be for a dealer to source your watch if they haven’t got it in stock.

We’ve already highlighted the increasing demand and corresponding scarcity of this watch. If you want to get hold of a model that’s in the best possible condition, with all the relevant and essential supporting certification and documents, then you need someone who can come up with the goods.

We specialise in sourcing and selling Rolex timepieces. Purchase your watch from us and we’ll guarantee you’re getting the best the market can offer.

This is more than a watch, it’s an investment. That deserves care and attention and this is what we can offer. For more details, please get in touch.

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