Rolex Daytona Green Dial: Why Do Collectors Want It?

Rolex Daytona Green Dial 116508


The Rolex Cosmograph Daytona is without a doubt one of the most popular watch models there is. Vintage Rolex Daytona watches, such as the “Paul Newman”, always take top dollar at auctions. Meanwhile, fans of modern Rolex Daytonas, such as the Ceramic bezel steel model, eagerly sign up for waiting lists.

While Daytona fans have clear favorites, one particular model has been making waves lately – the yellow gold, Rolex Daytona green dial ref 116508. Seen on the wrists of Jonah Hill and John Mayer, and with a years-long wait list, the green dial Daytona has become a cult favorite.


Here’s the story of how it achieved this status, and what makes it so special.




Daytona Green Dial
Rolex Daytona Yellow Gold Green Dial Mens Watch 116508
The ref 116508 Green Dial was launched in Baselworld 2016, in the same suite as the much coveted stainless steel Cerachrom bezel Daytona.

The watch is constructed in solid 18k gold and paired with a deep “racing green” dial that’s accented with 18k yellow gold hands and hour markers. There’s also a hint of red in the “Daytona” text, in the inner rings of the chronograph subdials, and on the hour markers.


Daytona Green Dial
Rolex Daytona Yellow Gold Green Dial Mens Watch 116508

Inside it beats the in-house Rolex caliber 4130 automatic chronograph movement. Operating at 4Hz, it has about 72 hours of power reserve (from the previous calibre’s 50 hours) and provides Rolex’s current standard of +2/-2 seconds per day accuracy.

As with all full gold watches, the watch is priced at a premium and supply is higher than the demand. In its first few years of production, one can actually find this watch sitting in dealer’s windows, just waiting to be purchased.





Daytona Green Dial
Rolex Daytona Yellow Gold Green Dial Mens Watch 116508

Fast forward to 2019, the ref 116508 Green Dial is sold out in authorized dealers, and prices on the secondary market can go as high as $50,000 (from the list price of around $34,600). It’s also said to have a year-long waiting list; and is usually allocated to premium customers.

How exactly did it get to this? Rolex certainly has singer-songwriter and known watch collector, John Mayer, to thank.

Mayer, one of the entertainment industry’s most prominent collectors and a frequent contributor to watch publications, showed off his Rolex Daytona Green Dial in Hodinkee’s Talking Watches.


Daytona Green Dial
Rolex Daytona Yellow Gold Green Dial Mens Watch 116508

Calling it “a sleeper hit”, John picked it up when not many collectors would and recognized its potential for being a future grail watch. The emerald-colored dial is not just unique among black and champagne-dialed gold Rolex Daytona watches, it’s also a color that stands out among Rolex’s line-up of green watches. Echoing pine trees and British racing green, the deep color and sunburst finish creates a stunning effect.

The sudden popularity of the Green Dial Rolex Daytona certainly heralded many milestones for Rolex. Aside from the record prices on the pre-owned market, it helped bring the solid gold sports watch back in demand, as recent years have seen the popularity of platinum and Everose gold in the market.

With such high demand and limited production, many collectors can’t wait to get their hands on this timepiece. You can get on the waiting list at an authorized dealer or make it yours today by getting it from SwissWatchExpo.





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