New Daytona Day is always an exciting day, and this one's no exception. Rolex is taking its trio of gold Daytonas and adding a beautiful meteorite dial to the mix. The three configurations are:
White-gold case, black Cerachrom bezel, Oysterflex bracelet (ref. 116519LN)
Yellow-gold case, yellow-gold bezel, yellow-gold bracelet (ref. 116508)
Everose gold case, Everose gold bezel, Everose gold bracelet (ref. 116505)
From a technical standpoint, these are the same Daytonas you've known for years: The same 40mm gold case, the same black ceramic or gold bezel, the same caliber 4130 movement, and either the same Oyster bracelet or rubber-and-metal Oysterflex "bracelet." These are all great things, and I'm very happy Rolex isn't futzing with the winning formula.
That said, the meteorite dial gives this watch a personality all its own. Rolex has used meteorite dials for quite some time now, and not too long ago, you could get the ref. 116509 Daytona (steel case, steel bracelet, steel bezel) with a meteorite dial, though it was only available with the less-beloved Roman numeral design. (That watch is still in the catalog, but only with more traditional dial options.) This is the first time we're seeing a meteorite dial on a ceramic-bezel Daytona, and it's kind of the perfect watch to pair it with. The black bezel adds some contrast and framing, bringing out the crystalline grain of the meteorite in the process. This trio of watches also joins the Day-Date 40 and the GMT-Master II in the Rolex Meteorite family.
Since this is Rolex we're talking about, these watches technically aren't limited editions, but you can bet that there'll be a years-long waitlist for each of them by the time you finish reading this sentence. Prices are $34,050 (white gold), $41,000 (yellow gold), and $43,700 (Everose gold), and the watches will be available soon from Rolex retailers worldwide.
I'm a huge fan of meteorite dials in general, and these look like absolute stunners. Rolex took some of the hottest watches on the planet and managed to make them even more desirable and collectible.
There are plenty of poetic reasons to love meteorite dials – the ability to wear something that's not of this Earth, the connection meteorites have to the long history of the universe and how we relate to time...I could go on. But purely aesthetically, this dial works perfectly for this watch. In particular, I really love the white gold / Oysterflex model. It has a ton of visual punch and must wear really fantastic on the wrist.
While I also like the monochromatic, low-contrast vibe of the diamond-and-meteor Day-Date, these Daytonas have a punchy look that I think works splendidly. The black sub-dials make a huge difference, as does the black bezel on the white-gold model. It's hard to tell how dramatic this effect will be in person, but I can't wait to see all three of these chronographs for myself.
Model: Cosmograph Daytona
Reference Number: 116519LN (white gold), 116508 (yellow gold), 116505 (Everose gold)
Case Material: White gold, yellow gold, Everose gold
Dial Color: Meteorite
Indexes: Applied batons, Arabic numerals
Lume: Yes, on hands and hour markers
Water Resistance: 100m / 330 feet
Strap/Bracelet: Oysterflex rubber bracelet with white-gold folding Oysterlock clasp, yellow-gold bracelet, or Everose gold bracelet
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, chronograph (12-hour, 30-minute, and 60-second totalizers)
Power Reserve: 72 hours
Frequency: 4 Hz (28,800 vph)
Total Components: 201
Rolex Superlative Chronometer Certified (COSC + Rolex certification)
Additional Details: Regulated to +2/-2 seconds per day after watch is cased. Uses a Parachrom hairspring and a Paraflex shock system, both proprietary to Rolex)
Pricing & Availability
Price: $34,050 (white gold), $41,000 (yellow gold) $43,700 (Everose gold)
Availability: Soon, at Rolex boutiques and retailers worldwide
Limited Edition: No
Disclaimer: This article first appeared on Bloomberg, and is published by special syndication arrangement.