Rolex Submariner Date vs Cosmograph Daytona Model Comparison

12:53 PM

Of all the professional Rolex models on the market today, the Submariner Date and Cosmograph Daytona get the most attention due to a combination of factors. They have many similarities even though they offer different functionalities and appeal to different demographics. I have placed the very popular stainless steel Submariner Date (Reference # 116610LN) next to the white gold Cosmograph Daytona (Reference # 116509) for comparison based on size, functionality and aesthetic. 

Rolex Stainless Steel Submariner Date (left) vs White Gold Cosmograph Daytona (right)
Powered by a 3135 self-winding mechanical movement manufactured by Rolex, the Submariner Date offers a clean, luminescent display with a Cerachrom bezel that features a 60-minute graduation that allows divers to time their dives. It features a brushed steel Oyster bracelet with an Oysterlock clasp that comes with a Glidelock extension system, adding 20 millimeters to the bracelet. This dive watch is waterproof up to 300 meters and has a power reserve of 48 hours.

Featuring a 4130 movement also manufactured in-house by Rolex, the Cosmograph Daytona features a chronograph function and a tachymeter printed on the bezel for keeping pace while on the race track. The white gold model features 18 ct white gold hour markers and hands, with luminescence on the hands. It also features an Oyster bracelet, this one in white gold with polished center links. Its Oysterlock clasp features an Easylink that extends it 5 millimeters for additional comfort. It is waterproof up to a depth of 100 meters and features a power reserve of 72 hours.

Rolex White Gold Cosmograph Daytona (top) vs Stainless Steel Submariner Date (bottom)
Both of these wristwatch models feature a 40 millimeter case, but as shown in the above photo, the case of the Daytona (12.2 millimeters) is slightly thinner than that of the Submariner Date (13 millimeters). You can also tell by looking at the photos that the white gold Daytona has a yellowish tint as compared to the cooler tone of the stainless steel Sub. The other obvious difference between the models is the bezel, the Submariner with a ceramic bezel and the white gold Daytona with a smooth bezel with the tachymetric scale printed on it.

Rolex Stainless Steel Submariner Date (left) vs White Gold Cosmograph Daytona (right)
In terms of aesthetic, each of these models checks different boxes. The Submariner Date is first and foremost a diver's watch. However, it is also a favorite of those looking for a solid stainless steel watch that doesn't call too much attention to the wrist. It is likely the Rolex model chosen most for daily wear, though those numbers are not verifiable. The Daytona, on the other hand, is more of a showpiece. Its busy yet appealing dial and pushers flanking the winding crown give it design details that make it stand out more as compared to other models.

Both of these Rolex models make excellent choices, each with their own unique legacy and admirers. There is a stainless steel Daytona configuration available (Reference # 116500LN) that features a ceramic bezel similar to that of the Submariner Date, however it is the current 'it' watch of the collection, so it is much more difficult to come by than the Sub. For more information on the 116500LN, check out my posts on the model configuration here.

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