Comparing The Rolex Kermit vs The Rolex Hulk
Watch & Bullion28 August 2020 | 6 min read
Rolex Kermit vs Hulk: What’s The Difference?
When you think of Rolex, one of the first models that will come to mind is the Submariner. It’s an iconic dive watch that’s been setting the standard for underwater timekeeping since its birth in the 1950’s.
Those that know Rolex even better, will know that the colour green is pretty special. Often reserved for special edition pieces, a Rolex in green, and especially a Submariner, is something truly special!
For this reason there are two Submariners that stand head and shoulder above the crowd: the Kermit and the Hulk.
On the face of it, these watches can seem pretty similar. But if you dive a little deeper (no pun intended), you’ll find the two watches have a number of differences which set them apart!
We’re going to take a look at the watches’ history alongside how they compare both inside and outside the case. And of course, we’ll take a look at the price of each to help you decide which green diver is the one for you!
- Kermit vs Hulk – History
- Kermit vs Hulk – The Dial
- Kermit vs Huk – The Bezel
- Kermit vs Hulk – The Case/Bracelet
- Kermit vs Hulk – The Movement
- Kermit vs Hulk – The Price
Kermit vs Hulk – History
In 2003, Rolex released the Submariner 16610LV to mark the 50th anniversary of the first every Submariner in 1954. No, that isn’t a typo – Rolex released the model 49 years after the Submariner debuted rather than 50, despite it being a 50th anniversary watch.
It became an instant hit with Rolex fans due to its stand out green bezel, a design twist not seen before through the Submariner’s history. The nickname ‘Kermit’ soon followed with the watch also lauded for its fantastic feel on the wrist and slim profile.
The Kermit stayed in production for 7 years, exiting the Rolex range in 2010. It was soon replaced by another green Submariner, the Hulk.
The Submariner 116610LV stepped into the Kermit’s shoes and remains in production until the present day. Many saw the Hulk as the evolution of the Kermit, taking the striking green design and applying it not only to the bezel, but to the dial as well.
Unlike the Kermit, the Hulk isn’t a special edition piece and became a solid fixture in the Submariner’s standard range!
With the history briefly covered, let’s put the watches side-by-side, starting with the standout difference – the dial!
Kermit vs Hulk – The Dial
At first glance, the differences between the Kermit and the Hulk are pretty obvious.
With just a subtle green design tweak, the Kermit keeps the classic matte black dial to match the range’s heritage. That matte black is coupled with the classic Rolex 18ct gold markings and the iconic luminous baton/Mercedes/lollipop hands.
Many collectors love the Kermit because of that classic look and feel, claiming that if the dial isn’t black, it’s not a true submariner.
As we know, when the Hulk came along it further embraced the green theme. Not only did Rolex move away from the black dial, they also moved away from the matte finish. The Hulk’s dial has a distinctive shine to it which not only helps it stand out from the crowd but propels it from a classic to a modern timepiece.
Those classic fans that snubbed the Kermit will definitely turn their noses up at the Hulk, but it’s an undoubtedly popular watch that now sits alongside Submariners of many different colours.
Kermit vs Hulk – The Bezel
The Kermit broke the boundaries of the Submariner range by incorporating that green bezel, and it’s without doubt the feature which draws collectors to the watch.
But even within the green bezel, there’s some controversy. Collectors with a very sharp eye will be extra keen to get their hands on a Rolex Kermit ‘Fat 4.’ As the Kermit evolved, so did the bezel. There’s a number of different slight design tweaks available on different Kermit batches with the bezel’s font slightly changing the shape/size of some numbers.
As the name suggests, the most distinctive is the number 4, with some collectors going crazy for the model with the slightly stumpier, fatter number 4.
From a functional point of view, the Kermit’s bezel is unidirectional and made of an aluminium insert that’s perfect for keeping track of dive time.
The Kermit took up most of the bezel controversy, with the Hulk building on the refined green design formula.
The Hulk retains the all-green dial and modern font, but upgrades the bezel material to Cerachrom. It’s still unidirectional but has a slightly different (darker) shade of green to match the green dial!
Day to day, you won’t be able to tell the difference on either bezel, but they do have a different contextual stand out factor based on the dial colour it accompanies.
Kermit vs Hulk – The Case/Bracelet
Whilst the key feature of both watches is the dial/bezel combo, the case and bracelet do slightly differ on both pieces.
The Kermit is a 40mm watch and is widely lauded for its slim profile and comfortable fit on the wrist. Many believe this to be one of the most comfortable and well proportioned Submariner’s ever made which again feeds into its popularity.
Whilst the Hulk remains a 40mm watch, it comes equipped with Rolex’s “Maxi case.” If we told you that many refer to it as the “super case” you’ll likely guess it’s because of its larger size.
Part of the reason the Hulk got the name it did is due to its increased size. The lugs and crown guard are also double the size of the Kermit’s making this a fairly chunky watch on the wrist!
Both bracelets sit on Oystersteel so feel similar around the wrist. The clasps do differ with the Kermit sporting an Oysterlock whilst the Hulk comes equipped with a Glidelock clasp. Often this comes down to personal preference but, as always, can be swapped out if needed!
Kermit vs Hulk – The Movement
Despite the differences in age, both watches use the exact same movement – the calibre 3135. The 3135 is a movement found across many Rolex models and has been in production since 1988.
Here’s some specs about this iconic movement:
- Movement: Automatic
- Display: Analog
- Jewels: 31
- Vibrations per hour: 28,800 BPH
- Power reserve: 48 hours
- Diameter: 28,5 mm
- Functions: Hours, Minutes, Seconds, Date at 3 o’clock
You won’t find many watches at this level with a movement better than this one. The movement is also COSC certified, so whether it’s the Kermit or the Hulk, you’re keeping exceptionally good time.
Kermit vs Hulk – The Price
Always one of the biggest talking points when it comes to comparing watches is the price. Now the comparison here isn’t quite equal with the Kermit no longer in production from Rolex but let’s compare the price all the same!
Most trusted watch dealers will start their Rolex kermit prices around the £9,000 mark. As you move up through newer and better condition models, the market will rise to around £10,000 – £11,000 where the majority of mint condition pieces can be found.
The exception with the Kermit comes with the ‘Fat 4’ version we discussed earlier. If you’re keen to get your hands on a model with the original font styles, expect to pay between £14,000 – £18,000 depending on the condition.
Directly from Rolex, the Hulk will set you back £7,450. Interestingly, the Hulk is one of the models in the current Rolex range that will set you back more pre-owned than brand new. Due to high demand and lack of production supply, most preowned Hulk’s will set you back around £11,000 – £12,000. This price may go even higher in certain regions, of for particular batch numbers!
Kermit vs Hulk – Conclusion
Both the Rolex Kermit and the Hulk are highly sought after Submariner models. Green is an incredibly popular design choice and when combined with one of the most iconic watch ranges in history, getting your hands on either can be a real challenge.
The deciding factor will likely come down to colours and whether you want to match the green bezel with either a black or green dial. Case sizing, bracelet types and price are also key factors to consider when picking between these two stunning pieces!
Which one do you prefer? The classic black dial of the Kermit or the modern, sleek finish of the Hulk?