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3 of the Rarest Watches in Rolex’s History

May 6th, 2020

Today, Rolex makes watches that combine form, functionality, and balance effortlessly.

A Rolex watch is synonymous with luxury, class, and precision. While they tend to retain a high resale value with time, a Rolex watch is worthy of investment.

However, if you go a few generations back, you would find that it has not always been the way like it is today.

rolex daytona unicorn

The manufacturer had to go through a trial and error process to settle on its core watch collection finally.

Interestingly, some of the experimental models yet persist today in limited numbers.

Today, we will be exploring three of the most unique and rarest watches that Rolex produced in its lifetime. Let’s take a look!

1. Rolex Daytona “Unicorn” Reference 6265/9

In 1970, Rolex made the ref. 6265/9 of entirely white gold, making it the most unique and luxurious Daytona version till that time.

However, what made the watch more appealing was ideally its unique “Sigma” dial.

  • The Daytona “Unicorn” flaunts a black dial with contrasting white gold indexes and sub-counters.
  • Moreover, the dial displays the Greek letters bounding the text “T Swiss T” at the 6 o’clock position, referring to as the “Sigma” dial.
  • Indeed, Rolex watches with Sigma dials are highly coveted among collectors.

However, they are ideally not more popular than the Daytona ref. 6265/9 with the Sigma dial.

The Rolex Daytona “Unicorn” spent many years in the high-end personal collection of John Goldberger.

In 2018, the watch went up for auction, thereby becoming the second most expensive Rolex timepiece ever sold.

2. Rolex Day-Date Reference 1831

In the late 1970s, Rolex produced the Day-Date ref. 1831 exclusively for the Shah of Iran.

  • This rare watch houses a movement that is exclusive to this reference.
  • Moreover, Rolex also furnished the watch with a variety of dials.
  • The manufacturer allegedly made only eight examples.

Now, the interesting fact is that:

Many people typically consider the Day-Date 1831 with integrated bracelet and squared-off case to be an Oysterquartz watch. Why?

This is because Rolex released the timepiece around the same period.

However, the fact is that the brand equipped the reference 1831 with an automatic Calibre 1566 movement.

  • Rolex offered all these versions in solid platinum.
  • Moreover, the Day-Date 1831 is one of the heaviest watches in the brand’s catalogue, weighing nearly 300grams.
  • Rolex embellished its hour markers and bezels with diamonds and offered different colour dials, mainly for the Shah.

Some iteration sported silver or black dials; whereas others featured vibrant lacquered Stella Dials.

Overall, reference 1831 is a model that is hardly ever encountered or also mentioned among seasoned professionals.

3. Rolex Non-Oyster Chronograph Reference 2737

Indeed, the Rolex Daytona is the most famous and desirable watch today.

However, it was not the brand’s first try at a chronograph.

Rolex produced the reference 2737 after the creation of the iconic Oyster case.

Regardless, this watch comes with the prevailing snap-on case-back.

  • The ref. 2737 features a traditional dial layout, known as “Regulator”.
  • Clock and watch manufacturers used these precise chronometers as a reference for setting the time on their pieces.
  • Moreover, while the minute, seconds and hour-hands are arranged on their sub-dials, it makes the watch more legible.
  • The Calibre 13’’’ lever movement powers the Rolex reference 2737.
  • The watch flaunts an inner spiral tachymeter and outer telemeter scale.
  • It also features a 36mm stainless steel case with slender lugs and Arabic numeral markings.

Moreover, the tooth-flanked winding crown features two oval-shaped pushers for operating the chronograph.

Overall, all these watches are indeed appealing, practical, and extremely rare creations, unlike anything prevailing in the brand’s current catalogue.

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