Rolex - The Geneva Watch Auction: THREE Geneva Saturday, May 14, 2016 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: 1968
    Reference No: 1680, caseback stamped 5512
    Movement No: D432'752
    Case No: 2'241'098
    Model Name: Submariner, "Red Sub"
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 1570, 26 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Oyster bracelet, reference 7836, end links stamped 380 and 358, max length 205mm. (240mm)
    Clasp/Buckle: Folding deployant twin lock clasp, with diver extension
    Dimensions: 39mm. Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed

  • Catalogue Essay

    Reference 1680 was launched in the second half of the 1960s and was the first Submariner to feature a date indication. In the earlier years of the model’s production, red text was used for the word ‘Submariner’ found at 6 o’clock. Several variations of “red Submariner” dials exist, with the most notable differences affecting the second line of text – the depth rating - found at 6 o’clock. The earliest of these had a depth rating with the meters positioned first, followed by the rating in feet.

    The present lot is a desirable, early “meters-first” version. Its desirability is further enhanced by the fact that it is also a coveted “tropical dial” that has aged to a warm and uniform shade of dark chocolate brown. The matching, luminous hour markers and hands have also aged in perfect harmony, being light beige in color. With its well-preserved case, this watch is a beautiful example of a highly desirable and collectible reference that can easily be worn on a daily basis.

  • Artist Biography


    Swiss • 1905

    Founded in 1905 England by Hans Wilsdorf and Alfred Davis as Wilsdorf & Davis, it soon became known as the Rolex Watch Company in 1915, moving its headquarters to Geneva in 1919. Like no other company, the success of the wristwatch can be attributed to many of Rolex's innovations that made them one of the most respected and well-known of all luxury brands. These innovations include their famous "Oyster" case — the world's first water resistant and dustproof watch case, invented in 1926 — and their "Perpetual" — the first reliable self-winding movement for wristwatches launched in 1933. They would form the foundation for Rolex's Datejust and Day-Date, respectively introduced in 1945 and 1956, but also importantly for their sports watches, such as the Explorer, Submariner and GMT-Master launched in the mid-1950s.

    One of its most famous models is the Cosmograph Daytona. Launched in 1963, these chronographs are without any doubt amongst the most iconic and coveted of all collectible wristwatches. Other key collectible models include their most complicated vintage watches, including references 8171 and 6062 with triple calendar and moon phase, "Jean Claude Killy" triple date chronograph models and the Submariner, including early "big-crown" models and military-issued variants.

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Ref. 1680, caseback stamped 5512
A fine and very attractive stainless steel wristwatch with date, bracelet and "meter-first tropical" brown dial

39mm. Diameter
Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed

CHF10,000 - 15,000 

Sold for CHF47,500

Contact Specialist
Nathalie Monbaron
+41 22 317 81 83

The Geneva Watch Auction: THREE

Geneva Auction 15 May 2016