1997 Rolex Explorer II (Ref. 16570) "Polar" Dial

It seems as though every reference and iteration of the Rolex Explorer II has details that set them drastically apart from one another, making it the Rolex reference that has seen the most drastic evolution through its tenure. From the first and original "orange hand" matte dial ref. 1655, to the modern 42mm produced today and everything in between.

The Rolex Explorer II ref. 16570  was introduced in 1989, directly succeeding the transitional ref. 16550 with some subtle cosmetic and internal upgrades. The Rolex Explorer II ref. 16570 employs the updated and robust cal. 3185 jumping hour movement, the black paint on the hands and marker surrounds is now standard on the white or “polar” dial variants, and the bezel font has been slightly modified from the previous reference. 

Stock # RLXEXP216570-9
Brand Rolex
Style Explorer II
Model 16570
Serial U2XXXXX
Size Men's
Material Stainless Steel
Dial White "Polar"
Millimeters 40
Bracelet Rolex 78360 Oyster Bracelet W/ 501B End Pieces



The strong case retains very thick and symmetrical lugs that show signs of very minimal polishing in the past and feature subtle chamfers and gentle signs of use. The fixed 24-hour stainless steel bezel is very crisp and retains all of its factory black enamel with light signs of use. The original Rolex 78790 Oyster bracelet with 501B end pieces retains 13 links that show no stretch and will fit up to a 7 3/4-inch wrist.


The original white dial with black marker surrounds is virtually perfect, showing no notable age or damage. The tritium lume plots have achieved a lovely creamy patina, and exhibit no degradation when inspected under UV light. The original tritium hands match the dial with no degradation present under UV light inspection.


None. The watch is keeping time perfectly, backed by a 1-year warranty on accurate timekeeping.