Understanding the Rolex Submariner Date Models

Thank you for taking the time to learn more about the Rolex Submariner Date model line! I will be covering the large variety of pre-modern & modern Rolex Submariner Date variations available in all metal types & mostly every dial types (excluding the rarest examples such as lapis lazuli & oynx etc.). Of course the vintage Rolex Submariner Date is a major part of the model line, but there is plenty of information to cover regarding the elder examples for a stand alone blog! Stay tuned for that blog. Let’s begin our discussion with a few of the basics regarding the legendary Rolex Submariner.

Metal Types

Each model number is produced in a variety of metals depending on the model number. The Rolex Submariner was produced in steel (16610 / 116610), two-tone 18k yellow gold & steel (16613 / 116613) & solid gold (16618 / 116618 yellow gold ) (116619 white gold)


Rolex Steel Submariner Date 16610 with Box & Paper

Rolex Steel Ceramic Submariner Date 116610 with Box & Card


Rolex Two Tone Submariner 16613T with Box & Paper

Rolex Two Tone Submariner 16613 featuring factory “Serti” Diamond & Sapphire Champagne Dial with Box & Paper

  • The two-tone & solid gold models were produced with diamond & sapphire champagne/grey

Rolex Two Tone Submariner Slate Serti Diamond & Sapphire Dial 16613 with Box & Paper

Rolex Two Tone Blue Ceramic Submariner 116613 Blue Complete with Rolex Box & Rolex Five Year Warranty Card


Rolex 18k Yellow Gold & Steel Ceramic Submariner Date 116613 with Box & Booklets

Rolex 18k Yellow Gold Blue Submariner 16618T F Serial

  • 40mm case diameter
    • Each model shares the same esthetic. The Rolex Submariner was only produced in 40MM case diameter.
  • Black bezel insert with uni-directional timing bezel on the steel models, black or blue on the two-tone 18k yellow gold & steel models & black or blue insert on the solid gold models

The steel model was only produced with a black dial. The two-tone model was produced with a black dial, blue dial, grey slate diamond / sapphire, champagne diamond / sapphire & black / blue factory diamond hour markers. The solid gold model is produced in a black dial & blue dial with regular lume hour markers or factory diamond hour markers.

The pre-modern / modern Rolex Submariner Date is fitted with the following

  • Triplock crown
  • Crown Guards



  • Both secured by a Rolex Oyster bracelet
  • Rolex Flip lock clasp


Rolex Steel Ceramic Submariner Date 116610 with Box & Card



Now diving into the differences between the modern 116610 vs the older 16610. The most visible difference between the two models is the difference in the bezel insert material. The ceramic bezel (officially Cerachrom) insert is scratch-proof unlike the 16610 aluminum inserts.

  • 16610 has a thinner case & thinner lugs than the 116610
  • 116610 is fitted with a cerachrom ( ceramic ) bezel insert which is scratch resistant
  • 16610 is fitted with a painted bezel insert which can scratch/dimple/dent much easier than the far more resilient cerachrom ( ceramic ) bezel insert
  • Applied lume on the 116610 is a blueish hue when activated vs the 16610 which is a greenish hue when activated



  • The new model flip lock clasp has a glide lock clasp vs the older 16610 folding clasp has pin holes for adjusting the size
  • The 16610 has a lesser wrist presence & weighs less than the 116610



  • 116610 always has a inner bezel engraving “ROLEXROLEXROLEX”
  • 16610 is mostly non-inner bezel engraved with the exception of later transitional serial number watches with inner bezel engraving which are seldom seen