Rolex Daytona

Rolex watches are synonymous as one of the finest timepieces ever produced. The Rolex Daytona is near the top of the list as far a popularity and quality. While Rolex made many versions of chronograph watches, none were as popular as the Rolex Daytona. In the 1930’s Rolex began to manufacture the first chronograph watches. These were named the Rolex Cosmograph. This was one of the few models of Rolex watches where the quality of the movement was directly proportional to the metal of the case. The model 6263 in 18k gold  used the Valijoux 72 ebaches which were timed to to the chronometer standard while the steel case versions were not. At this time no one would offer a discount on a Rolex except for the cosmographs. They would offer up to 20% off to just sell these watches. Despite the discounts and the usefulness of these watches, Rolex chronograph watch sales still lagged until 1986. That is when the demand for the Rolex Daytona really took off. It was in Italy that the demand for the Rolex Daytona began. While in Great Britain ans the U.S. would happily sell these watches at a discount, in Italy the same watch would sell for double the list price. It wasn’t until Paul Newman wore a Rolex Daytona in the movie “Le Mans” that the Rolex Daytona truly began to take off. The white dial with black sub-dials began to be know as the Paul Newman Dial. At the height of the Daytona craze the 18k solid gold Daytona with the “Paul Newman” dial was selling for around $35,000.  Rolex, never being slow to capitalize on a trend, ceased production on the Rolex Cosmograph promising to release it soon with a completely updated design. This drove the prices up significantly.