Why Are the “Batman”and “Batgirl” by Rolex In Such High Demand?

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All text and photos were provided by The Watch Standard. 


Why are the “Batman”and “Batgirl” by Rolex in such high demand? 

The Rolex Batman and the Rolex Batgirl are some of the most sought after and in high demand watches. Some will even wait months or even years to have their hands on one of these iconic and status claiming timepieces. What’s with all the hype and what’s the difference between the two? The folks at ​The Watch Standard​ are going to highlight the main features and differences between the two. 

Rolex GMT Master II Batman Ref. 116710BLNR

Rolex GMT Master II Batgirl Ref.126710BLNR Cerachrom Bezel in black and blue

Rolex GMT Master II with Cerachrom Bezels

Back in 2005, Rolex unveiled a new generation of the GMT-Master II, featuring for the first time, a bezel made from ceramic instead of aluminum. Rolex dubbed the ceramic bezel “Cerachrom” and touted its resistance to fading and scratching. Over the following years, several GMT-Master II models were released in various materials, all fitted with Cerachrom bezels. However, all of these Cerachrom bezels were rendered in black, which was a departure from the previous GMT-Master models that always (since its inception in the 1950s) offered the option of a two-tone bezel. 

The combination of two colors on a 24-hour marked GMT-Master bezel was not simply for aesthetic reasons but for practicality too as it allowed the wearer to differentiate between day and night hours in the second time zone. Yet, Rolex had declared that producing a two-tone Ceramic bezel would be impossible, explaining why the then-new GMT-Master II generation only had monochromatic bezels. This remained true until the introduction of the Rolex GMT-Master II ref. 116710 BLNR. 


Rolex GMT Master II Batman Ref.116710BLNR Cerachrom Bezel in black and blue

Rolex GMT-Master II 116710BLNR “Batman” 

In 2013, Rolex disproved its own assertion with the launch of the ​GMT-Master II ref. 116710BLNR​ featuring a blue and black Cerachrom bezel. Side note, “BLNR” in the reference number is short for “bleu noir,” which is French for “blue black.” 

Using a patented process, Rolex achieved the two-tone Cerachrom colorway by adding black coloring to an entirely blue ceramic bezel. The Rolex Batman was born and quickly became one of Rolex’s most sought-after watches. 

The GMT-Master II ref. 116710BLNR “Batman” sports a 40mm 904L stainless steel Oyster case water-resistant to 100 meters and a 904L stainless steel Oyster bracelet complete with the Easylink 5mm comfort extension clasp. The black dial is furnished with the familiar Mercedes-style hands, lume-filled hour markers, and a date window at 3 o’clock magnified by the customary ​cyclops magnification lens​ protruding slightly above the sapphire crystal. Of course, as a GMT watch, the dial is also home to the arrow-tipped 24-hour hand that serves to indicate a second time zone on the bezel. Powering the GMT-Master II 116710BLNR is the automatic Rolex Caliber 3186 movement with a 48-hour power reserve. 

The high demand of the GMT-Master II ref. 116710BLNR resulted in long waitlists at Rolex boutiques everywhere and above-retail prices in the secondary market. The Rolex Batman was in production for seven years and discontinued in 2019 to make way for a newer version. 

Rolex GMT Master II “Batman” Ref. 116710BLNR

Rolex GMT-Master II 126710BLNR “Batgirl” 

In 2019, the ​Rolex GMT-Master II 126710BLNR​ made its debut to replace the 116710BLNR. While most of the fundamentals remain the same—primarily the blue and black Cerachrom bezel, case dimensions, dial design, and stainless steel construction (although, Rolex now refers to its 904L stainless steel as “Oystersteel”)—the new ref. 126710BLNR differs from its predecessor in a couple of notable ways. 

The most noticeable difference is that the GMT-Master II 126710BLNR is fitted with the five-link Jubilee bracelet instead of the three-link Oyster bracelet. Rolex no longer makes steel GMT watches with Oyster bracelets, opting for Jubilee bracelets exclusively. The Jubilee bracelet of the 126710BLNR is also equipped with the super practical Easylink 5mm comfort extension link. Due to the dressier nature of the Jubilee compared to the sportier Oyster bracelet, some in the watch community have nicknamed the GMT-Master II 126710BLNR the “Batgirl.” Although, it is worth pointing out that most simply refer to it as the “new Rolex Batman”. 

The other significant change is found inside the watch. Driving the ref. 126710BLNR is the new-generation automatic Caliber 3285 movement with an improved power reserve of 70 hours. 

Yet again, the blue and black GMT-Master proved to be a fan favorite, with the brand new 126710BLNR selling out fast at authorized dealers and commanding healthy premiums in the pre-owned market. 


Rolex GMT Master II Batgirl Ref. 126710BLNR

Which one is for you? 

Despite the introduction of the “Batgirl” or as many also refer to as the “Batman with Jubilee bracelet” (ref. 126710BLNR), the now-discontinued Batman ref. 116710BLNR remains highly popular in the pre-owned market. 

If you are a fan of a sportier look, Batman with the Oyster bracelet (ref. 116710BLNR) will bring exactly that to the table. For those who are seeking a dressier look, improved movement and power reserve, the newer Batgirl (ref. 126710BLNR) might just be the watch for you. However, the movement of the older Batman is just as durable and continues to meet the expectations of movements in Rolex manufactured watches. Both excellently designed and manufactured, the Batman and Batgirl are magnificent timepieces that will continue to be coveted references for years to come. 

Getting your hands on the new GMT Master II ref. 126710BLNR Batgirl may take longer than one anticipates or is willing to wait for. The waitlist time for this high-demand piece goes on for years. Thanks to the longevity in watches manufactured by Rolex, a popular option for many is to buy these high demand watches in pre-owned condition. Luckily, The Watch Standard carries the waitlisted Rolex Batgirl and discontinued Rolex Batman in their collection, in excellent condition, and are for sale. 


Rolex GMT Master II Batman Ref. 126710BLNR on the wrist

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