In April, Rolex announced it would delay the launch of its new watches until 2021 until further notice, saying it had no specific launch date. At that time, many speculated that we might not see any new Rolex watches in 2021. This announcement, coupled with the news from the previous month that Rolex was closing its factories and facilities to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, made it seem possible that Rolex might actually delay unveiling its new watches altogether. Read more on the Rolex Shortage. However, to the delight of collectors and enthusiasts, Rolex has just set a 2021 release date for its new watch.
This news comes as a major relief to lots of luxury watch collectors and enthusiasts, along with countless retailers around the globe who depend on Rolex models to account for a significant portion of their annual sales. Additionally, the cancellation of Baselworld and the delay in the unveiling of Rolex's new 2021 watches have also resulted in an increased amount of speculation about what the brand is going to unveil.
In addition to there being no new Rolex watches for 2021 thus far, no models have been discontinued either. This has led to many collectors speculate about what Rolex might have planned for 2021. Besides that, given Rolex's previous and rather vague statement from April, the news that we likely will see some new Rolex watches this year has sparked much excitement from countless individuals.
Despite Rolex now officially naming a date for the launch of its new 2021 watches, this is still not a guarantee that we - the public - will actually see new models in 2021 at all. What's more, the announcement of any new watches and their actual real-world availability may be significantly different because of Rolex previously shutting down its factories earlier in the year.
Given that these September dates are being described as what will be a coordinated global launch, there is a great chance that the public will actually get some new 2021 Rolex models then. However, there are also two other scenarios to consider:
As the global coronavirus pandemic is not yet over, there is still a lot of uncertainty about whether a pandemic will occur later this year. The first week of September does still pose a risk for significant gatherings, and should global conditions worsen, there is an opportunity that Rolex's new September launch, along with Geneva Watch Days will ultimately get postponed or canceled altogether.
So what does Rolex have decided for 2021? At this point in time - and likely right up until September 1st (and possibly even later) - only Rolex will know. Speculation among collectors and industry insiders has never been higher; But, whatever Rolex is released or stops in 2021, one thing is certain: it will almost certainly affect the open market price of some existing Rolex watches.