Let’s talk about watches that look like Rolex.
In every man’s heart, there is a Rolex that he loves. Be it the Datejust, The Daytona, or the Submariner.
The problem is, these watches are expensive and, in some people’s minds, overpriced to the point of being a daylight robbery.
So, are there any alternative watches that look similar but won’t break the bank?
Let’s check out 15 watches that look like Rolex that will not bleed you dry, focusing on:
- Oyster Perpetual
- Daytona Paul Newman
What are Homage Watches?
Firstly, lets look at Homage watches. What are they?
Homage watches ‘pays tribute to the original watch by adapting their design. They are also much cheaper than the original.
They often look similar to the original, but not to the point of being an imitation. The brand name will be different, and there will be differences in design here and there.
But in general, when looked at from far, it’s tough to tell the difference.
The makers of the original watch usually do not take offense at homages. Instead, they see it as a form of flattery.
Why? Because imitation is the best form of flattery. Bet you heard of that.
Some of the watches recommended here are homages. Some will have similar designs, but still distinctive enough.
Watches That Look Like Rolex Cellini
Rolex Cellini is a Rolex dress watches line that rivals Patek Philippe Calatrava and Vacheron Constantin Patrimony. Cellini retails starting around $14,000.
However, us mere mortals that might not want to splash that kind of money on a watch. So let us look at three similar watches:
Hamilton started off as an American watchmaker but is now under the family of watch brands under the Swatch group. The family includes Omega, Longines, Tissot, Swatch, Rado, Breguet, and many more.
Hamilton Jazzmaster is a 42mm watch with a stainless steel case in rose gold tone. The dial color is silver when rose gold-tone hands and hour markers.
The watch also features a date display at the 6 o’clock position day window at the 12 o’clock position. The watch is 50M (165ft) water-resistant.
Orient is one of the ‘big four’ Japanese watchmakers, besides Seiko, Casio, and Citizen. Orient’s Kamasu is one of the coveted dive watches out there.
However, their line of dress watches are the most popular. They are commonly known as Bambino.
The watch is 36.5mm, with a white dial. The marks and hands are in rose-gold. A the 3 o’clock position, there is a date window. The watch has a stainless steel case in a rose-gold tone.
Orient’s proprietary F6724 automatic movement powers the watch. The movement features hand-winding and hacking. Also, it is water-resistant up to 30M, with a domed mineral crystal.
Seiko Presage is Seiko’s line of more premium dress watches. This particular model runs on Seiko’s workhorse 4R35 automatic movement. Also, the date window is at the 6 o’clock position.
The hands and markers are in gold, with white dial. The watch case is stainless steel, in gold colour. Comes with genuine leather strap with pin and buckle.
Watches That Look Like Rolex Oyster Perpetual + Datejust
The Oyster is the most straightforward and accessible of Rolex watches. It is also one of the more affordable Rolexes. Also, it is also very customisable, with options for dial colour, bracelet types for example.
As a result, the Oyster Perpetual often becomes many people’s first Rolex.
Now, if you do not wish to spend $5,800+- for a brand new Oyster Perpetual, what about these three?
One of the most recognized watch brands of all time, Seiko is legendary. Established in 1881 by Kintaro Hattori, Seiko has genuinely advanced the world of watchmaking.
Their line of watches have never failed to captivate the world, such as the Grand Seiko, SKX Diver series, and Presage.
Seiko 5 SNK793 operates a 21-jewel automatic movement, encased in a stainless steel casing. The dial is shiny blue with silver hands and marks.
The whole package is protected by Seiko’s proprietary Hardlex crystal. At the 3 o’clock position, there are day and date windows. 30M (99ft) water-resistant.
Cadisen Watch Company is established in 2013. It is based in Shenzhen, China. At present, they use Japanese quartz and automatic movements in the watches. For example, those from Miyota or Seiko.
Their designs are very much inspired by legendary Swiss watches. As a result, they have many watches that look like Rolex as well.
This brings us to C8053. The watch looks almost similar to the Oyster Perpetual Datejust. It runs on the Japanese Miyota 8215 movement and sports a coined edge bezel.
The link bracelet is made from stainless steel, with a push-button hidden clasp. The watch has sapphire crystal window dial as well. Also, there are many variations available for this model, just like the Oyster Perpetual.
Pagani Design is a watch company based in Guangdong, China. The watches they produce are often homages or inspired by iconic Swiss watches.
They do not produce their own movements but use Chinese and Japanese ones such as Seiko’s.
This homage features 3 analog luminous hands and runs on a Japanese Miyota 8215 automatic movement. There is a date window at the 3PM position.
The case and bracelet are 316L stainless steel, with synthetic sapphire crystal for the dial window. The watch is 100M (330 feet) water-resistant.
Watches That Look Like Rolex Explorer
Rolex Explorer is the watch born in 1953 to celebrate Sir Edmund Hillary conquering Mount Everest. It has since defined the category of ‘explorer watch.’
Compared to other Rolex models, the Explorer has a more tough casing. The dial is also more legible so that the watch is usable under rough conditions.
A basic Explorer retails around $9,000. If you are in the looking for something more affordable, what about these instead?
Citizen is the world’s 5th largest watchmaker. It is well known for the Eco-Drive technology. With it, your watch will continue to run, as it will be powered by light.
Their Promaster range is also coveted by dive watch enthusiasts. JDM hunters salivate on Citizen’s premium offerings, such as The Citizen line of watches.
Citizen Chandler features a black dial with 3 analog luminous hands, powered by Eco-Drive Caliber J810. Also, there is a date window at the 3 o’clock position.
The watch is 100M water-resistant and comes with Citizen’s 5 Year Limited Warranty.
Torgoen is an U.S. based watch company, focusing on pilot watches. They only use Swiss movements, 316L stainless steel casing, and genuine Italian leather for their watches.
The T10 carries similar characteristics. It carries a Swiss Ronda quartz movement, and features luminous hands and dials. Also, it is protected by sapphire crystal, and is water resistant up to 100M (330 ft).
Benyar is a watch line from Pagani Design, which is a Chinese company that designs homages for Swiss watches.
The watch is 41mm in diameter and features a black dial. Also, the hands and dial are luminous and look similar to Explorer.
Next, the watch operates on a Chinese Top G2666Z automatic movement. The watch is enclosed in an alloy case with a Hardlex crystal. Water-resistant to 50m (115 ft).
Watches That Look Like Rolex Daytona Paul Newman
The Rolex Daytona can be considered a tool watch customized for car racers. Accordingly, the name Daytona is given to this variant of Daytona because of the Daytona International Speedway in Miami, U.S.
Retail prices for Rolex Daytonas start at $13,150 for the stainless steel and ceramic model (the ref. 116500). After that, prices may increase, depending on the level of customization.
This particular Paul Newman variant of Rolex Daytona is the most expensive, sold off at an auction for over $17.1 million. It has since been see as ‘the’ racing watch.
So if that is not within your budget, what about these watches?
More popularly known as the Orient Panda, it features a 42mm diameter case in stainless steel. The dial is a combination of black and white, which gives it the nickname ‘Panda’.
The watch operates on an Orient’s Solar power movement. Also, the watch comes with a stainless steel bracelet with 10 Bar water resistance.
Firstly, the watch is enclosed in a 40mm 316L stainless steel case powered by Seiko’s VK63 Quartz movement.
Also, synthetic sapphire crystal is used at the top. Watch hands and marks are luminous, and the watch is 30M water-resistant.
Stührling started off in the U.S. in 2002 to produce beautiful Tourbillions. They have since sold over 18 million watches and produced many non-tourbillion watches as well. Stührling also designs and market many watches that look like Rolex too.
This particular Daytona homage is powered by a Seiko Quartz movement, encased in a 41mm stainless steel case.
Dials are luminous, with a date window between 4 and 5 o’clock. The dial window features Stührling’s proprietary Krysterna crystal, claimed to be more shatter resistant than sapphire crystal. The watch comes with a steel bracelet and is water-resistant up to 100M (330 feet).
Watches That Look Like Rolex Submariner
Ahh… the holy grail.
When it launched in 1953, the Submariner was the first dive watch to have 100M (330 feet) water resistance. Also, submariners today are waterproof to a depth of 300 meters (1,000 feet).
A Submariner with no date window retails around $9,000, and they go up depending on customizations requested.
Meanwhile, if you are balking at the price, here are some of the best look-alikes that you can get at the market right now, and they are definitely much more affordable:
Pagani Design is based in China and they generally design homages of iconic Swiss watches. As a result, they carry many watches that look like Rolex.
Seiko NH35A automatic movement powers this particular Submariner homage. Also, the movement is encased in a 42mm 316L stainless steel case.
Dials are luminous, with a date window at 3 o’clock position. The dial window features a synthetic sapphire crystal. After that, the watch comes with a steel bracelet and is water-resistant up to 100M (330 feet).
Latin for ‘invincible,’ Invicta was founded in Switzerland in 1837 by Raphael Picard. The guiding principle behind Invicta is to produce beautiful Swiss watches and sell them at affordable prices.
The Invicta Pro Diver is 40mm in diameter, and features a black dial with luminous hands. The design of the hands and marks are close to the Submariner. Seiko’s NH35A automatic movement powers the watch.
The watch comes with a stainless steel bracelet with a fold-over clasp. It has 200M (660 feet) water resistance and is suitable for diving.
Finally, this Stührling is a homage to Rolex and is very much affordable. It is built with solid stainless steel and runs a Ronda 515 Swiss quartz movement. Also, the polished dial features luminous markers in circles and baton configurations.
The watch is protected with Krysterna crystal. Stührling claims the crystal to be more shatter resistant than sapphire crystal. Also, the watch is water-resistant to 200M (660 feet).
To sum up, this is just a ‘warm-up’ list.
Because seriously, there are many watches that look like Rolex out there.
Specific models of Rolex, such as the Submariner, have so many homages to the point that it could deserve its own article.
However, the most crucial point is to understand that purchasing homage watches does not mean you are not supporting the original watch company.
In fact, purchasing a homage is much better than buying an imitation.