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The Minute Details: The GMT-Master Ref. 1675 Part II

December 11, 2017

BY Paul Altieri


Welcome to Part II of our in-depth look into the most valuable details of the vintage Rolex GMT-Master ref. 1675. We previously covered the different crown guards, dials, and GMT-hands available on the GMT-Master ref. 1675, so If you haven’t already, please read Part I here.

Vintage GMT 1675

The Vintage GMT 1675 is a beautiful and highly valuable watch.

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GMT-Master Ref. 1675: The Bezels

An instantly recognizable feature on some Rolex GMT-Master watches are the so-called “Pepsi” bezels—named so for the same red, white, and blue colors found on the Pepsi logo. In fact, the famous red and blue bezel made its debut on the very first GMT-Master (the ref. 6542) and Rolex has used it on many subsequent GMT-Master models since, including the ref. 1675 we’re discussing today.

Earlier versions of the Pepsi bezel on the GMT-Master ref. 1675 are often referred to as Fat Font bezels due to their visibly thicker 24-hour numerals. Over time, Rolex furnished later editions of the GMT-Master ref. 1675 with bezels marked with thinner numerals. Needless to say, due to their lower production numbers and older age, Fat Font bezels are often more expensive to own than bezels with thinner font.

When Rolex introduced the GMT-Master ref. 1675 in 1959, the watch was only available with the Pepsi bezel. However, sometime in the early 1970s, Rolex also made the watch available with a black bezel. Yet, due to their iconic colors, Pepsi versions of the GMT-Master ref. 1675 are typically more popular than black bezel versions in the vintage market.

There’s also the very elusive “Blueberry” bezel variant of the GMT-Master ref. 1675 with—as its name suggests—a solid blue bezel. Apparently, Rolex produced small batches of GMT-Master ref. 1675 with blue bezels destined for the French Air-Force, the UAE Air-Force, or top retailers such as Cartier and Tiffany. Very rare and highly counterfeited, original Blueberry watches are some of the most expensive GMT-Master ref. 1675 models to own.

Vintage GMT 1675

An inside look at the movement of the Vintage GMT 1675.

GMT-Master Ref. 1675: Caliber 1565 vs. Caliber 1575

During its two-decade-long production run, Rolex equipped the GMT-Master ref. 1675 with two different automatic mechanical movements.

GMT-Master ref. 1675 watches produced from 1959 until 1964 run on Rolex Caliber 1565 with a frequency rate of 18,000 beats per hour and a 44-hour power reserve. Conversely, those produced after 1964 run on Rolex Caliber 1575 with a frequency rate of 19,800 beats per hour and a 48-hour power reserve.

Furthermore, from 1971 onwards, Rolex equipped the Cal. 1575 with the hacking function, where the seconds hand comes to a complete stop when the winding crown is pulled out. Both movements are COSC-certified as illustrated by the “Superlative Chronometer Officially Certified” text on all GMT-Master ref. 1675 watches.

Yet again, while the later versions included a higher frequency and slightly more power reserve, age trumps practicality in regards to value in the vintage market. Older versions equipped with the Cal. 1565 will typically cost more than later models powered by Cal. 1575 movements.

rolex gmt vintage tropical dial

This Rolex GMT 1675 Vintage Tropical Dial will still keep time to a very accurate measure.

How Valuable is the GMT-Master ref. 1675?

Prices of GMT-Master ref. 1675 range widely from as high as $30,000 to as low as $7,500. As expected, earlier models intact with original bezels, original dials, original hands, and original bracelets will command the highest prices. Newer models will cost less and the value of a vintage GMT-Master ref. 1675 really starts to take a hit if it’s furnished with plenty of replacement parts.

However, whether you decide to purchase a four-figure GMT-Master ref. 1675 or a five-figure one, the GMT-Master ref. 1675 is a beautiful and storied Rolex watch to own.

What do you think of the Rolex GMT-Master ref. 1675 watch? Do you own one or would you like to own one? We’d love to hear from you, so share your thoughts and pictures with us in the comments section below.





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