Rolex - The Hong Kong Watch Auction: XIV Hong Kong Friday, May 27, 2022 | Phillips
  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1994
    Reference No: 16520
    Movement No: 71'894
    Case No: S414’602
    Model Name: Cosmograph Daytona
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 4030, 31 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet stamped “78390”, endlinks stamped “503B”, max length 190mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster deployant clasp stamped “S12”
    Dimensions: 40mm diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement, bracelet and clasp signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by Rolex guarantee stamped Hyde Park Jewellers United States dated 16th April 1994, Rolex service guarantee, instruction manual, product literature, green card holder, 1993-1994 calendar card, hang tag, fitted presentation box and outer packaging.

  • Catalogue Essay

    Evolving from the manually-wound period of the Rolex Cosmograph Daytona, the firm introduced their first self-winding Daytona model in 1988 via the ref. 16520, featuring a self-winding Zenith El Primero based cal. 4030 modified by Rolex. Marking an important era for Rolex, the new Daytona reference that replaced the ref. 6265 featured an upgraded design of the case. With a more robust and pumped up 40mm diameter case and still retaining its screwed-down pushers, the bezel is solid with its units per hour engraved on. The ref. 16520 was discontinued in 2000, making way for Rolex’s very first Daytona model powered by the firm’s first in-house self-winding chronograph cal. 4130.

    Very well-received by collectors when it was released, the ref. 16520 today commands a premium in the market as it is highly sought after and considered as one of the most important sports wristwatches launched by Rolex. However, certain series of the reference commands a much heightened value compared to others. During the manufacturing process of the dial, one of the procedures is to apply a layer of varnish on the registers, the nature of this varnish that was used in certain batches produced within the S, N, T and W serial range often developed a natural “tropical” brown hue over time at random.

    The present example bears an “S” serial from circa 1994 featuring a black “inverted 6” dial with “tropical” brown registers. Boasting a well-preserved and strong case with thick lugs, the present early specimen of the coveted colour changed Cosmograph Daytona is offered with its original Rolex guarantee and its full set of accessories.

  • 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.

    View More Works


Ref. 16520
A rare and attractive stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with “tropical” registers, bracelet, guarantee and presentation box

Circa 1994
40mm diameter
Case, dial, movement, bracelet and clasp signed

HK$235,000 - 470,000 

Sold for HK$630,000

Contact Specialist

Thomas Perazzi
Head of Watches, Asia 
+852 2318 2001

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: XIV

Hong Kong Auction 27 - 28 May 2022