Rolex has a unique position in the field of high-end mechanical timepieces. It is the greatest luxury watch brand in the world, as well as the most expensive watch. The Swiss company creates unique models that have become genuine status symbols. Wearing a classic Submariner or a modern Day-date, for example, reveals a great deal about what you’re doing and what you have achieved in your career.
The brand’s perfect production method that ensures accurate and consistent operations, as well as the brilliance of its design and the uniqueness of its materials, makes it special. The most expensive Rolex watches are featured below, starting from the lesser to the most jaw-dropping one.
1. Cosmograph Daytona
In 1963, the mesmerizing Daytona dial commemorates the highly efficient world of professional racing car driving. Among sports chronographs, Cosmograph Daytona defined a distinct watch genre. The chronograph feature is activated by two little pushers on the right side of the watch and they can be tightened down to provide 100-meter waterproofness. Its updated price starts from $16,780.
The brand developed the beautiful Datejust in 1945 to commemorate the business’s 40th anniversary. It is presently the most popular watch among businesspeople all over the world. The wristwatch is so adaptable that it may be donned as part of both business attire and a business attire ensemble. It comes with a wide range of bands, dials, and substances and its updated price starts from $17,000.
The Day-Date secured your status. It is one of the most extravagant timepieces in Rolex’s existing portfolio and has been sported by countless heads of state and world leaders. The caliber 3255 movements in the 2021 Day-Date offers exceptional performance and reliability in a casing that is ideal for wearing with a tuxedo. The Day-Date starting at $34,500.
4. Pearlmaster Collection
The Pearlmaster is at the top of the list of the most highly-priced Rolexes available today. The watch costs $87,000, although the price may change based on the market price of diamonds at the date of acquisition. The wristwatch is offered in 34 mm and 39 mm case sizes and is only available in white gold, yellow gold, and Everose.
5. Steve McQueen’s 1967 Submariner
The present obsession with classic Rolex watches began with Steve McQueen’s 1967 Submariner. The timepiece is the first to be auctioned off for a high price in 2009. The auction, which was organized by Antiquorum, ended at $234,000, the top amount ever given for a vintage Rolex at the moment. The watch is a vintage Submariner from 1967.
6. Platinum Diamond Pearlmaster
The Platinum Diamond Pearlmaster is based on the Day-Date collection rather than the Datejust. The timepiece features 42 diamonds on its unique bezel and with meteorite diamonds. The 39mm dial watch was sold for $277,850 in 2011.
7. James Bond’s 1972 Submariner
It is the real watch sported by Sir Roger Moore in the 1973 film Live and Let Die as James Bond. In 2015, the timepiece was auctioned off for $365,000 at a Phillips auction in Geneva. The watch was altered for the film, particularly the bezel to resemble a circular saw.
8. GMT Master II Ice
This GMT-Master Ice was worn by football legend Cristiano Ronaldo at the 14th Dubai International Sports Conference. It is the costliest new Rolex on the market. It costs $485,350, although the price may vary based on the market price of diamonds at the date of acquisition.
9. Jack Nicklaus Day-Date
In 1967, the brand presented this yellow gold Day-Date to famed golfer Jack Nicklaus. He’s been wearing it almost every day since then. The Golden Bear, Jack Nicklaus, sported this Rolex when he earned 12 of his remarkable 18 professional major championships. When Nicklaus lifted the title trophy after his triumphs, the timepiece was frequently captured. In December 2019, the watch was purchased for $1.22 million at a Phillips auction.
10. Eric Clapton’s Oyster Albino Cosmograph Daytona
Eric Clapton’s Oyster Albino Cosmograph, sold for significant sums not once, but twice during public auctions. The first time occurred in 2003 in New York when the watch was purchased for $505,000 at a Sotheby’s auction. Twelve years later, in May 2015, it was auctioned off for $1.4 million in a Phillips auction in Geneva, over three times its original price.
11. Marlon Brando’s Apocalypse Now GMT-Master
This GMT ref. 1675 used by Marlon Brando in the film Apocalypse Now was auctioned off by Phillips in December 2019 for $1.952 million. The auction suitably titled the Phillips Game Changers event, saw the GMT-Master from 1972 sell for far more than the projected amount.
12. Antimagnetique Reference 4113 from 1942
The oldest Rolex is the 1942 Antimagnetique ref 4113, which sold more than $2.5 million at a Phillips auction in Geneva in 2016. It features an unusually big case for its production year, measuring 44 mm, the largest case Rolex ever built.
13. Bao Dai
In 2017, the Bao Dai was auctioned off for more than $5.1 million at Phillips in Geneva. The wristwatch had previously been sold at auction. The Nguyen family first auctioned it in 2002 for $235,000, the highest sum ever obtained for a Rolex at the moment.
14. 1971 Daytona 626 Unicorn
The price of this 1970 Daytona, which sold for $5.9 million in 2018, can be attributed to its uniqueness and scarcity. The Reference 6265 is the only model available in 18-karat white gold, therefore the nickname “Unicorn.” During the period, a large proportion of Daytonas were made of stainless steel.
15. Paul Newman’s Daytona
With a price tag of $17.8 million, Paul Newman’s Daytona is not only the costliest Rolex, but it is also the most expensive watch ever sold in the world. It quickly surpassed the record set of $11 million in 2016 by a 1943 Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar Chronograph.
Some other famous Rolex owners not mentioned above include Dr. Martin Luther King, John F Kennedy, and Elle Macpherson. Some of the most highly-priced models are historical items that have increased in value due to their scarcity or the celebrity of their prior owners. Others are modern items that you may buy right now by strolling into a Rolex retailer.