1967 Rolex Daytona (Ref. 6240) "Paul Newman Exotic Dial"
If you ask most vintage watch collectors what their ultimate "holy grail watch" is, many would answer the Rolex “Paul Newman” Daytona without hesitation. Perhaps the most important watch and dial configuration in the whole vintage Rolex oeuvre, these watches have become arguably the most prestigious and valuable watches ever produced by Rolex. Also known as the Rolex Daytona exotic dial, these watches will forever be known to most as the "Paul Newman" as the famed actor, racer, and philanthropist Paul Newman famously wore a ref. 6239 Daytona with an exotic panda dial configuration as his personal watch.
In October of 2017, Paul Newman's personal exotic dial Daytona ref. 6239 was auctioned by Phillips Auction House in NYC for $17.75m, making it the most expensive Rolex wristwatch ever sold and solidifying its position as the brand’s ultimate icon and the halo piece of watch collecting.
The Rolex Daytona ref. 6240 was the prototype of the first waterproof Cosmographs designed by the marque. Set apart from the more common pump pusher models of the late 1960s (the 6239 and 6241, respectively), the ref. 6240 featured brass screw-down pushers, and a larger 7mm twin-lock crown. Unknowingly shaping the path for the iconic Rolex Daytona we know and love today, the Rolex ref. 6240 Cosmograph was produced for only a few years and Rolex quickly evolved its Oyster Cosmograph design with the refs. 6263 and 6265, which became mainstay models through the ‘70s and ‘80s. Exemplifying the rarity of the prototype Rolex Daytona "Oyster," this watch features the iconic (and undeniably striking) reverse-panda “Paul Newman” exotic dial. Watches with these dials are already considered rarities, however, within the ref. 6240 range, “Paul Newman” dials are only accepted in the 1.65 million serial range with reverse-panda dials that lack the "Oyster" text, making this watch an extremely special find.
|Dial||Exotic Reverse-Panda "Paul Newman"|
|Strap||Rolex "U.S.A. Made" Jubilee Bracelet|
The very impressive case exhibits only subtle evidence of previous polishing and retains thick and symmetrical lugs that show light signs of honest use throughout. The original Mk. I black bezel insert is in very well-preserved condition, with the only notable wear being at the “85” marker. The original prototype brass Mk. 0 screw-down pushers remain in exceptional condition. The case retains its original 7mm twin-lock crown. The 6241 signed case back is original to the watch and commonly seen amongst other ref. 6240 examples as case backs on early Daytonas were often interchangeable. The watch comes supplied on a "U.S.A. Made" Jubilee bracelet with 20 links that show normal stretch for the style and age of the bracelet.
An overall gorgeous example, this reverse-panda exotic “Paul Newman” Daytona dial checks all of the boxes as an incredibly collectible example. The white and red stepped outer minute track remains exceptionally bright and clean from dust or aging. The matte black center portion of the dial is in near perfect condition, there is one small mark above the “30” of the 3 o’clock sub-dial that partially continues through the sub-dial, this mark is nearly impossible to see with the naked eye. The white sub-dials remain a crisp white in coloration, displaying no discoloration or age, in the 3 o’clock sub-dial there is a very small amount of paint loss in the line above “20”. The creamy tritium lume plots all remain intact, only showing minor degradation in the 5, 7, and 11 o’clock lume plots when inspected under U.V. light. The original tritium hands match the dial perfectly with no degradation present under U.V. light inspection.
None. The watch was recently serviced and is keeping time perfectly, backed by a 1-year warranty on accurate timekeeping.