The Rolex Explorer 40 showcases a new 40mm case The Rolex Explorer 40 showcases a new 40mm case

The Rolex Explorer 40 showcases a new 40mm case

Borna Bošnjak

The discontinuation of the 39mm Rolex Explorer was a surprise, and its 36mm replacement, though a return to original sizing, left many wondering what Rolex had up its sleeves. Naturally, the crown had a plan, and it has now come to light in form of the new Rolex Explorer 40. Its simplicity remains untarnished, offering improved legibility and better variety in the Explorer range.

Rolex Explorer 224270 40mm dial

Its black lacquer dial features the classic 3-6-9-triangle layout, with all indices and numerals pumped full of Rolex’s Chromalight lume. All the dial appliques and signature Mercedes hands are in 18k white gold, meaning they won’t take on patina as the watch ages.

Rolex Explorer 224270 40mm

The largest differentiating feature from its predecessor is naturally the 40mm case. Unchanged in material, lovers of the Explorer can expect the same bright polish and excellent corrosion resistance that Rolex’s Oystersteel offers, extending to the three-link Oyster bracelet as well. With an Oysterlock folding clasp, the Explorer 40 offers easy on-the-fly adjustment with its Easylink extension system. The Twinlock crown screws down into the case, sans-crown guards, offering up to 100 metres of water resistance for all those times you’ll have to swim while mountaineering, while a sapphire crystal and its anti-reflective coating further help with legibility.

Introduced in 2022, the Calibre 3230 isn’t new, though it lacks none of the features you’d expect from a modern Rolex calibre. The automatic movement sports a Parachrom hairspring with Rolex overcoil, Paraflex shock absorbers protect the oscillator and the Chronergy escapement beats at a smooth 4Hz for up to 70 hours. The movement is a certified Superlative Chronometer, meaning it’ll fall into a -/+ 2 second per day variance post-casing.

Rolex Explorer 40 pricing and availability:

Rolex Explorer 224270 40mm

The Rolex Explorer 40 is available now. Price: A$10,800

Model Explorer 40
Reference Number 224270
Case Dimensions 40mm (D) x 11.6mm (T)
Case Material Oystersteel
Water Resistance 100 metres
Dial Black lacquer
Crystal(s) Sapphire crystal
Strap Oystersteel three-link bracelet
Lug Width 21mm
Movement Calibre 3230
Power Reserve 70 hours
Functions Hours, minutes, seconds
Availability Now
Price A$10,800