A very fine and rare stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with suspended logo and bracelet

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1990
    Reference No: 16520, inside caseback stamped 16500
    Movement No: 42’100
    Case No: E'956'062
    Model Name: Cosmograph Daytona, "Floating Cosmograph"
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 4030, 31 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet, reference 78360, endlinks stamped no. 503
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex deployant clasp, stamped no. 09
    Dimensions: 40mm Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement, and bracelet signed.
    Literature: For another example of a reference 16520 with black dial and suspended logo, please see The Ultimate Rolex Daytona by Pucci Papaleo, pages 256 and 257.

  • Catalogue Essay

    Reference 16520 is among Rolex's most innovative models to date. Housing a heavily modified Zenith-based caliber 4030 mechanism, the model was fitted with the first automatic chronograph movement in the firm's history. At the time of its launch in 1988, the watch garnered an immediate waiting list at Rolex retailers – much like its descendent, the reference 116500 would do in 2016.

    Two dial features make this early automatic Rolex Daytona even more collectible: the detached or "floating" Cosmograph designation seen in the first two or three years of production, and the "inverted 6" on the hour totalizer. These details, inconsequential to the layman, are of utmost importance in the vintage Rolex collecting realm, adding rarity and desirability to an already popular reference.

    The present watch is also offered in incredible condition, with truly no signs of wear. It has been preserved by the current owner in such immaculate condition as a testament to the watch’s historical importance and rarity.

  • Maker Bio

    Rolex

    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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Rolex

Ref. 16520, inside caseback stamped 16500
A very fine and rare stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with suspended logo and bracelet

Circa 1990
40mm Diameter
Case, dial, movement, and bracelet signed.

Estimate
$20,000 - 30,000 
CHF19,900-29,900
€17,400-26,100
HK$157,000-235,000

sold for $45,000

Contact Specialist
Paul Boutros
Head of Watches, Americas
+1 212 940 1293
pboutros@phillips.com

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New York Auction 5 December 2018