The yellow gold Rolex Daytona Paul Newman 6241 sells for a quarter of a million dollars
Offering 345 lots, Sotheby’s just wrapped up the New York City edition of their Important Watches auction with a total sales result of $7,346,127. Taking place on December 10, 2015, some pieces did spectacularly well, including the fifth most expensive piece of the event, a Rolex Daytona Paul Newman 6241 in 14k yellow gold selling for $250,000, slightly more than double its high estimate of $120,000. The ref. 6241, circa 1968, is viewed as one of the rarest versions of the Daytona Paul Newmans as its estimated that only a few hundred examples were produced from 1966 – 1969. Its rarity, along with its popularity and very fine condition set the stage for its high reaching price.
A rare yellow gold Pre-Daytona ref. 6238 circa 1963, also broke its high estimate ($40,000 – $60,000) and sold for $75,000. The ref. 6238 was the last Rolex Oyster case chronograph featuring the tachometer scale on the dial as future models would have them engraved on the bezel instead This particular model was in near perfect condition, possibly unused, and was sold by the family of the original owner. Also, the stainless steel Pre-Daytona 6034 anti-magnetic chronograph circa 1962 sold for $38,750, well beyond its original estimate of $15,000 – $25,000.
Another notable Rolex watch on offer during the Sotheby’s NYC Important Watches auction was a stainless steel Daytona Paul Newman 6239 (estimate: $60,000 – $90,000) which sold just shy of its high estimate at $85,000.
The final hammer price on a yellow gold Pre-Daytona Anti-Magnetic 6234 (estimate: $30,000 – $50,000) was $38,750, while a pink gold Rolex Day-Date 118235 (estimate: $7,000 – $9,000), circa 2005, was bought for $15,000, and a yellow gold GMT-Master 1675 (estimate $8,000 – $12,000), circa 1978, sold for $13,750.
Other brands that did exceptionally well during the auction were Patek Philippe and Breguet, with the platinum perpetual calendar chronograph with moonphases Patek Philippe ref. 5020 (estimate $120,000 – $180,000) selling for $322,000, the yellow gold World Time Patek Philippe ref. 1416 (estimate $70,000 – $90,000) reaching $202,500, and the Breguet Split-Seconds Stopwatch (estimate $150,000 – $250,000) fetching $346,000. The most expensive piece of the auction was the Patek Philippe ref. 3448 selling for $472,000 – just below its high estimate of half a million dollars.
Surprisingly, the yellow gold Rolex 6062 triple calendar with moonphase indicator and star dial, circa 1960, which was expected to reach $70,000 – $90,000, did not sell, and neither did the Patek Philippe ref. 767/3 perpetual calendar minute repeating split seconds chronograph with moonphases pocket watch (estimate: $250,000 – 350,000).
Vintage Rolex Daytona watches are of course extremely popular and sought after by the collecting community, particularly the Paul Newman models. The Daytona Paul Newman shattering its estimate selling for $250,000 illustrates that this is not a trend that’s about to slow down anytime soon.