Top 10 Most Expensive Rolex Watches Ever Produced
If you were wondering what the 10 most expensive Rolex watches in the world are, then you know for many watch collectors and watch specialists, the Rolex is the watch to aspire to. Synonymous with quality, luxury, and style, this benchmark Swiss brand continues to have the same appeal today that it has had for decades before. But even when it comes to Rolex, not all watches are created equal, as most watch collectors can attest. Rolexes occupy some of the top ranks of the most expensive watches in the world throughout history.
Whether personalized on a movie set or purchased by a famous actor, each watch on this list has been produced by the king of watchmakers at a time in the company’s incredible history. Here we present the ten most expensive Rolex watches in the world, sold by the company to date, based on their selling price or valuation.
Most Expensive Rolex Watches
Here are some of the most expensive watches from Rolex.
Rolex Submariner 1967 (Steve Mcqueen)
An elegant silver finish, an attractive black dial, and a distinctive 1960s Rolex look can give this 1967 Rolex Submarine all the hallmarks of a high-quality watch, and it is one of the most expensive Rolex watches out there. But the value of this unique watch does not come from its specific model. Instead, the famous previous owner of the Rolex, none other than Steve McQueen, is the reason for the high cost of this one-of-a-kind vintage collectible.
This watch, which sold for an impressive $234,000 at auction in 2009, was more than worth 10th place on this list. The watch is referenced 5512 and remains one of the most coveted watches in the world to date.
Rolex Daytona in Ferrari Red (Paul Newman)
To continue the theme of celebrity collectibles, the Rolex Daytona is a one-of-a-kind Ferrari Red, owned by famous actor Paul Newman, taking the spot at number 9. Inspired by the classic Ferrari’s bright red and resounding black theme, this hand-wound watch features 17 individual jewels and has an incredibly distinctive appearance. Immediately recognizable, there is a reason this unique piece of watch history would appear on the list of the most expensive Rolex watches.
Sold for a whopping $267,203 at auction in 2014, the Daytona, owned by Paul Newman, proved to be one of the most expensive Rolex watches in the world. The watch is referred to as 6565, and only 22 versions of this incredibly rare Rolex are believed to exist to this day, adding to the appeal of its specialized design.
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Rolex Pearlmaster in Platinum Diamond
Diamonds have always been regarded as the ultimate luxury. The Rolex Pearlmaster in Platinum Diamond is no exception to that rule, representing one of the most expensive Rolex watches in the world ever produced. This beautiful watch is a limited edition, and even its dial is unique, created from meteorite diamonds. As if that weren’t enough, the bezel itself is also adorned with 42 perfectly spaced baguette-shaped diamonds. Elegant, attractive, and immediately striking, the incredible luxury of this watch makes it easy to see why it is so valued.
Among the trendiest timepieces ever sold on the list, the Pearlmaster was launched in an ultra-limited edition for a whopping $277,850. As the most suitable contemporary piece for retail, this unique timepiece can be found in luxury jewellers more often than at an auction. Nonetheless, it is a truly spectacular addition to the list.
1972 Rolex Submariner (James Bond)
It’s not just real-life heroes that add value to great collectibles. The fictional spy James Bond has also proven his worth regarding the luxury watch, with the 1972 Rolex Submariner, in particular, attracting a great deal of attention. Worn by popular Bond actor Sir Roger Moore, the watch was explicitly modified for cinematic purposes, including reshaping the bezel into a distinctive circular saw for Live and Let Die. While these modifications make the watch less suitable for telling time, they further add to the unique appeal of this elegant timepiece.
Sold at auction for a staggering $365,000 in 2015, this collector’s item is truly worth more than its weight in gold. Referenced as 5513, the value of this watch shows that Rolexes can be as valued for their history as for their functionality.
Gold Rolex Oyster Perpetual (Dr. Rajendra Prasad)
The Gold Rolex Oyster Perpetual is a unique and incredibly distinctive Rolex, a watch with a truly unique and fantastic history. Created in precious rose gold, with an image of India on the dial, this elegant piece was a gift to Dr. Rajendra Prasad, the first president of India. The watch also includes the date of India’s first constitution as part of its design. The watch’s past is shrouded in mystery, and the watch itself appears to have been stolen from Prasad’s family decades earlier.
While Sotheby’s has valued this unique watch at a staggering $444,000, the watch has never been sold. This is because the Indian government has worked to intervene in the sale of the watch to return it to its rightful owners, the Prasad family, which can remain in their hands from now on.
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Rolex GMT Master II Ice
Ostentatious is probably the best word to describe one of the most luxurious and expensive Rolex watches globally. Eye-catching, incredibly luxurious, and full of diamonds, there is nothing subtle about this incredible timepiece. Created in 2014, this spectacular watch is crafted from the whitest gold and is covered in dazzling diamonds every inch, set in extravagant designs and shapes.
When it comes to incredible luxury, few watches match the GMT Master II Ice. One of the more expensive Rolex models, with a market price of $485,350, the purchase of this unique piece is certainly not something to be taken lightly, but it is sure to be a success; however, it chooses to display it.
Oyster Albino Cosmograph Daytona (Eric Clapton)
Another beautiful watch that its famous owner made incredibly popular. The Cosmograph Daytona in a unique Oyster Albino colorway is a stylish watch in its own right, made in 1971. This particular watch was one of four with distinctive silver chronograph totes, leading to the Albino colorway. It’s simple to understand how this gorgeous watch may be worth so much even without having a famous ancestor because it has a traditional black and silver style with distinctive features.
For Eric Clapton’s Oyster Albino Cosmograph Daytona, the auction price is $1.4 million. Last sold at auction in 2015, the value of this unique piece continues to grow year after year. Considered the holy grail of Rolexes, this watch has reference 6263.
The perfect example of a Rolex whose value has flourished over time; the Rolex Antimagnetique represents the old world of watchmaking. Never released to the general public, these highly selected colorways were created only 12 times. Gifted exclusively for racing drivers and teams in 1942, we’ve never seen anything like this elegant old-world example of Rolex since.
Selling at auction for a staggering $2.5 million in 2016, collecting this beautiful timepiece is undoubtedly not for the faint-hearted. With only a dozen in existence, it seems likely that the value of this unique watch will only increase over time, possibly making it the most expensive watch ever produced by Rolex in the process.
Gold Rolex (Bao Dai)
When it comes to royalty, Rolexes always fetch an incredible price. The one-of-a-kind Rolex Bao Dai is the perfect example of this. Created from 18-karat yellow gold, this watch belonged to Bao Dai. This famous figure was the last emperor to rule Vietnam. With diamond markers and a black dial, the value of this watch is evident only by its appearance, without even being aware of its incredible history.
This gold Rolex, which sold at auction for $5 million just a couple of years ago, is the second most expensive Rolex watch in the world. This is due, in part, to its unique and luxurious design and its fascinating and rich history.
Rolex Cosmograph Daytona (Paul Newman)
This eye-catching and attractive watch may look pretty standard to the untrained eye. But this specific Rolex Cosmograph Daytona, which belongs to legendary actor Paul Newman, is the highest-value watch Rolex has ever produced. The style of the watch was so well known for its use by Newman that it is often classified as the ‘Paul Newman Watch.’ While the watch itself was purchased at the famous Tiffany store by the late actor’s wife, a message with a personalized inscription, plus the fact that the actor wore the watch every day, vastly inflated its value.
Selling at auction for a staggering $17.8 million in 2017, Rolex will struggle to meet that goal when producing new watches in the future. The most expensive Rolex watch in the world is as unique as it is incredible.
Collectable Rolexes can be incredibly rewarding, even if your budget is more limited than the million-dollar costs of some of the most expensive watches in the world. Auctions are an excellent resource for finding the best collector’s items, and it is worth taking the time to search for that perfect piece. Regardless of what you think of Rolex’s most expensive watches, you can’t deny that there is something a little charming about each one. That’s all for this most expensive Rolex watches.
Which are the most expensive Rolex Watches?
Following are the most expensive Rolex watches ever produced –
Rolex Submarine 1967 (Steve Mcqueen), Rolex Daytona in Ferrari Red (Paul Newman), Rolex Pearlmaster in Platinum Diamond, 1972 Rolex Submarine (James Bond), Gold Rolex Oyster Perpetual (DR. Rajendra Prasad), Rolex GMT Master II Ice, Oyster Albino Cosmograph Daytona (Eric Clapton), Rolex Antimagnetique, Gold Rolex (Bao Dai) & Rolex Cosmograph Daytona (Paul Newman).
Are Rolex watches a good investment?
Some of the more expensive Rolex watches sold over the past five years are priced astoundingly. Especially considering the price at which they were first purchased. Some collectors have specialized in investing in rare Rolexes to resell them with a significant gain a few years later.
Why are Rolex watches so valuable?
Rolex watches are valuable because of the following reasons –
- Leading innovation
- Rare and precious materials
- Outstanding manufacturing process
- Dedication, time, and attention to details