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Rolex watches are one of the most desired timepieces in the world. But not everyone can afford to buy one because of astounding Rolex prices. And this leads to the question: “Why are Rolex watches so expensive?”. It’s not exactly a mystery. The story behind the production of a single Rolex watch is enough to provide answers to that question.
You’ll start to understand how much effort this world-famous brand has invested to bring us state-of-art technology and impressive innovations. Thus, we can enjoy perfect timepieces in different series to fit various occasions. Whilst many of us are obsessed with how eye-catching they are, the question, “How much does a Rolex cost”, always comes to mind.
These renowned timepieces are actually largely handcrafted. This implies that there is limited Rolex stock for each model. But there are so many collectors who want to buy Rolex, making a great impact on Rolex cost. Rolex prices are connected to its supply and demand.
Because this aspect isn’t constant, Rolex prices fluctuate from time to time. If you have found the Rolex watch of your dreams, don’t let it go. It might cost much more the next time you see it! So, if you’re clueless about a few basic Rolex prices, here’s a guide to help you out!
Here we are going to explore Rolex prices, ranging from the cheapest Rolex to the most expensive Rolex. To keep things interesting, we’re going to introduce 12 popular series of the brand. Whether you are a newbie collector or a Rolex expert, there’s something for everyone in this list.
The Rolex Submariner has been the most popular series in Rolex since the 1950s. When it was launched in 1953, divers around the world rejoiced. It was the first wristwatch to feature a 100-metre water resistance. This breakthrough made the Rolex Submariner a milestone in the industry, setting a new standard for divers watches. The design of the Rolex Submariner takes into account deep-sea diving.
The unidirectional rotatable bezel was first seen in the Rolex Submariner, which is actually an essential tool to count divers’ time underwater with precision. The large and clear luminescent hour markers, together with the luminescent Chromalight display in this bezel watch, are also important features.
These enhance readability and allow divers to have a clear reading of time while diving in low-light conditions. This iconic bezel and dial design have now become not only a true diving watch but also an identity and an iconic piece for watch collectors.
The price of the Rolex Submariner Date with its useful date display window on the dial is usually higher than the Rolex Submariner “No Date”. The prices of the different models in this divers watch series varies according to the popularity and the exceptional designs.
The Rolex Hulk, also known as the Rolex Submariner Green, with its rare green bezel and matching green dial, is definitely one of the valuable ones. While its retail price is at around $9,060, finding a new Rolex Hulk in the market might cost you more. It can go up to as much as $16,000 nowadays due to its rarity.
Another model with a sharp-coloured dial is the Rolex Submariner 16613. The solid blue colour, with gold accentuating its bezel, certainly makes this piece eye-catching. Retailers are selling it for around $7,500 or even as much as $9,000. This is relatively “cheap”, considering Rolex prices.
Even a style in a more common colour like the black Rolex 116610LN, its prices can range from the official $8,513 to the retail price of $12,180. The popularity of the Rolex Submariner Date in black is always a popular choice amongst gentlemen.
Even a Submariner with a basic black bezel and dial like the Rolex Submariner 114060 “No Date” (Official price at $7,462; Retail price at $10,256) and the Rolex Submariner 116610 Date watch (Official price at $8,513; Retail price at $12,180) also have an increase of approximately 30% in retail price when compared to the official price.
Vintage Rolex Submariners also have a price variation in different models. For example, the price can range from $7,692 for the Rolex 16610 to $17,300 for the Rolex 5513.
The Rolex Sea-Dweller has an impressive water resistance capability. After Rolex’s years of collaboration and research with diving professionals, a comprehensive diving timepiece has been created – the Sea-Dweller.
Compared to the Submariner, the Sea-Dweller features water resistance for up to 4,000 feet (1,220 metres)! Obviously, the Sea-Dweller greatly outshines the Submariner in this regard. However, the Rolex Deep Sea is even more impressive. It can tolerate a depth of 12,800 feet (3,900 metres)! This deep blue watch has a Rolex-patented Ringlock system for its strength and pressure resistance.
The popularity of this series is reflected in the price of its used watches. The vintage Rolex Sea-Dweller 4000 is still selling at $15,287 today. With the success of the commemorative model, Rolex crafted more modified yet classic Sea-Dweller pieces along the road.
The popular deep sea blue dial of the Deep Sea D-blue returned during BaselWorld 2018 with an innovative and patented 3235 movement, delivering an even more precise and reliable timepiece for watch collectors.
The Rolex deep sea prices are $12,523 officially and $15,484 for retail price. Other than the blue Rolex, black is another choice for the gents. To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Sea-Dweller collection, the Sea-Dweller 126600 was launched in 2017.
Its design has evolved to a 43mm dial with its first-ever magnifying date window. A collection name in red is marked at the middle of the dial as a commemorative feature to the original Sea-Dweller. It is officially priced at $11,275 while the retail price is at $16,010.
The Rolex Daytona is for people who like racing and speed. Featuring Rolex’s chronograph for professional racing drivers, the series has been tied with the high-performance world of motorsports since its birth more than 50 years ago.
To address the precise timing required in car racing, the Rolex Daytona has three counters on the dial, allowing users to measure elapsed time displayed in hours, minutes, and seconds. The Cerachrom bezel topped on the dial has a tachymetric scale, which is a useful tool to read average speed over a distance based on the elapsed time.
The timing function is controlled by just a simple click to the pusher, demonstrating the simple design of this series.
The Rolex Daytona 2017 is hot in the market. The Rolex Cosmograph Daytona has a Cerachrom bezel and a first-of-its-kind Oysterflex rubber strap both in black, fitted in 18-carat gold or white gold or Everose case.
This rose gold Rolex Daytona watch is selling at $33,300, an increase of more than 20% when compared to its official price at $27,513. Due to limited production, the Rolex Daytona price continues to soar higher.
The more common Rolex 116520 has a retail price of $22,051, but if you prefer a more sophisticated design, this will set you back for up to $30,000. The Rolex Cosmograph Daytona “Rainbow” features an array of rainbow gems set around its bezel.
This gold Rolex watch is priced at $30,770 nowadays while the same Rolex with a diamond dial costs as high as $57,690. Amongst all the models in this collection, the Rolex Daytona Ceramic 116500LN is a favourite amongst many a gentleman.
Instead of a gold dial, this silver Rolex is fitted with a cool black dial. The Cosmograph is now sold at around $25,640, nearly double its official price which is at $12400, making the Daytona a real symbol of class and luxury.
Rolex GMT Master and Rolex GMT Master II
The GMT Master series is comprised of some of the most eye-catching models. The colour variations and combination of the bidirectional rotatable bezel make it a unique model amongst Rolex’s collections. On the other hand, the GMT Master II has evolved into a better timepiece than the aforementioned model. But both are still exceptional timepieces.
With the aid of the 24-hour graduated bezel, this Rolex watch makes it an ideal piece for frequent travelers. This feature means that you will be able to view two different time zones at the same time.
The GMT Master II, however, is even more impressive. You can view not two but three different timezones due to its independent hour-hand, 24-hour hands, and the rotating bezel. Moreover, its bezel features a Cerachrom insert to enhance its durability.
A new-generation Rolex movement — the 3285-calibre —powers the GMT Master II for better precision and reliability. The power reserve of this self-winding movement has been extended to 70 hours. In terms of its aesthetic, the watch also comes with the iconic Jubilee bracelet, adding comfort and a certain charm to this model. GMT Master II is definitely the perfect partner for the city people!
When you look at the continuous increase in the Rolex GMT Master II‘s price, you will be more than willing to invest in GMT watches. Both the Rolex Batman with a duo-toned black and blue rotatable bezel and the Rolex GMT Master II “Pepsi” with a duo-toned blue and red bezel are the most famous models.
The Rolex GMT Master II “Batman” — reference no. 116710BLNR — has a retail price of around $16,700 which is twice as much as its original price at $9200.Quite pricey, right? Still, many watch collectors cannot resist the Rolex Batman.
Likewise, the Rolex GMT Master II “Pepsi” — reference no. 126710 BLRO — sells for quite a lot of money, but it’s definitely cheaper than the Rolex Batman. Priced at $12,820, the Rolex Pepsi is a good option if you want to start collecting the GMT series.
Rolex Oyster Perpetual
The Oyster Perpetual Datejust looks down-to-earth when compared to other series. In fact, the Oyster Perpetual has its roots to the original 1920s Oyster. The timeless design of the Oyster Perpetual makes it a simple yet functional timepiece for every watch lover.
The series is named after the strong Oyster case made of Oystersteel which provides the watch ample protection and water resistance. Oystersteel is also extremely resistant to corrosion, ensuring the polished appearance of each Rolex Oyster Perpetual on the wearer’s wrist.
Why is it called “Perpetual”, you ask? Equipped with a balance wheel and a half-moon-shaped oscillating weight that rotates freely (a mechanism invented by Rolex), this provides the timepiece with a constant energy. The self-winding mechanism has made its mark in the watch industry. The series is definitely the one that pushed Rolex to the top of the world. As its popularity continues to skyrocket, the series has developed different models with a variety of dial colours and sizes.
You may find the price of the Rolex Oyster Perpetual surprising. The basic Rolex Oyster Perpetual 39 is priced at $5,680 which is a relatively affordable Oyster Perpetual watch for beginners. The Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date price is slightly above the model without a date display window. A basic Rolex Oyster Perpetual Datejust costs around $6000 nowadays.
The Rolex Datejust was the first mechanical timepiece with a date window at the 3 o’clock position on the dial when it was launched in 1945. The classic and chic design makes it a popular series amongst Rolex watches. The Date Just 41 with the Everose Rolesor and Yellow Rolesor cases are the signature designs amongst the collection.
With its assortment of hour markers and dial colours to choose from, we think that the rose gold Rolex is amongst the distinctive pieces in the Datejust series. The Jubilee bracelet, which has a five-piece metal-link design, was launched with the Oyster Perpetual Datejust in the 1940s. This iconic bracelet design is now synonymous to comfort, fashion, and durability.
Of course, the Rolex Turn-O-Graph is one that we can’t miss when talking about Datejust. The Oyster Perpetual Datejust Turn-O-Graph was launched as the first Rolex timepiece topped with a rotatable bezel. If you wish for a bigger dial compared to the Rolex Datejust 36, the Rolex Datejust II is the perfect choice for you. This 41mm-dial watch is equipped with an even more advanced movement — the calibre 3136 — and stronger shock absorption.
The Rolex Oyster Perpetual Datejust with reference number 116234 is one vintage Rolex Datejust that is considered as a good “cheap” Rolex. Priced at around $7820, this is a very attractive stainless steel entry-level Rolex watch for the beginner watch enthusiast.
If you are looking for a 36mm watch with a unique dial design, the Rolex 116200 is a good choice with a retail price of around $7000. Though rather cheap, this Rolex will impress all and sundry.
Still, some of the models in the series with gold or diamonds could cost around $10000 in terms of the retail price. The Rolex 126334 is an example. With hour markers fashioned out of 18-carat gold, the Datejust 41 is sold at around $11,500.
Rolex Yachtmaster & Rolex Yachtmaster II
As a timepiece designed for sailing, the Rolex Yachtmaster carries various features suited for a sea voyage. Apart from those, the series originated from the classic Rolex Oyster series and has succeeded its spirit and characteristics.
Rolex has successfully introduced an innovative and first-of-its-kind technique to the Yachtmaster II– the programmable countdown with a mechanical memory.
Anyone whose heart is close to the sea will definitely cherish this timepiece. This watch can time precisely with the programmed countdown from 1 to 10 minutes. To do so, the distinctive Ring Command bezel operates in connection with the movement, serving as the key to the programme countdown function.
As a nautical watch, the water-resistant and durable Oysterflex strap developed by Rolex is specially designed for this series. Instead of adopting the traditional rose gold Rolex design, Rolesium was created for the Yacht-Master.
Bezel made of valuable and shiny 950 platinum is topped on the case. Aside from that, its strap is made of Oystersteel, elevating its luxury to the next level. With its sophisticated features and charming designs, the series is a must-buy for fans of Rolex.
Rolex engineers devoted lots of their time and effort in developing this series. So, you shouldn’t be surprised that this piece is quite expensive compared to other Rolex prices. The Rolex Yachtmaster 40 with a Rolex rubber strap has an official price of $26,270. A more affordable one would be the Rolex 116622 which stands at $11,550. It’s quite an investment but a worthy one, indeed.
The Rolex Yachtmaster two-tone is another popular model in the series. The Rolex Yachtmaster rose gold matches with the Oystersteel in the case, bezel, and bracelet perfectly. Together with the royal blue dial, the model 16623 again is a symbol of luxury. You will need to shell out $9340 (retail price) for this piece.
Rolex is keen on expanding the family. During Baselworld 2018, Rolex didn’t showcase the series. In fact, the new Rolex Yacht-Master 42 was introduced this year. While it already has an official price of $27,800, you can’t find this latest model in the retail market yet. So, you should try to be patient!
The Rolex Air-King features an iconic black dial. The numbers 3, 6, 9 are enlarged and features the clear minute scale, allowing the wearer to read the time easily. A salute to the aviation pioneer, the Rolex Air-King is also a successor of the Rolex Oyster.
Both the Rolex Oyster and Air-King feature a40mm Oystersteel case and the strong Oyster bracelet. Powered by the Rolex Perpetual movement 3131 calibre with the antimagnetic function for aeronautical purpose, the timepiece is a highly precise and reliable one.
When you’re a newbie and you feel intimidated by Rolex prices, the Rolex 14000/24 is a well-reviewed timepiece from the collection. This Rolex Oyster Perpetual Air-King’s current retail price is around $3850 which is comparatively affordable (considering official Rolex prices). Its simple yet classic design and the rugged, iconic Oystersteel is really a good choice for new collectors.
The Rolex Air-King 5500 is a well-known model in the collection’s vintage series. The gold piece has a relatively lower price than other Rolex prices for gold watches. It sells for around$4488. The new Rolex Air-King features a more modern and sporty design. It’s also an affordable piece amongst the Oyster Perpetual Rolex prices list.
The Oyster Rolex model 116900 has an official price of $6192. However, its retail price is about $6667. This is quite a small difference between both Rolex prices. Considering this aviator’s watch’s functions and cost, first-time buyers of Rolex should definitely purchase one to start off their collection.
The Rolex Sky-Dweller came up with some of the most impressive models. The centre disc, with the 24-hour display on the dial, is the most distinctive feature which displays the time of the second time zone. The rotatable Ring Command bezel topped on this charming watch gives it quite an unusual appearance.
Classified as a traveler’s watch, the pieces from the Rolex Sky-Dweller can easily adjust the date, local time, or reference time by turning the bezel and the winding crown. In addition, this masterpiece features Rolex’s own high-end technology.
Some of the models even own up to 14 patents for their innovative designs and technology such as the annual calendar and the deep-red rectangle around the dial indicating the current month. The timepiece has one of the most complex calibres of Rolex in its heart — the self-winding mechanical calibre 9001.
The unassuming models in the Sky-Dweller series are pricey. A rose gold Sky-Dweller fitted with a dark Rhodium dial (reference no. 326935) goes for a retail price of around $43,000! This is definitely one of the most luxurious pieces in terms of Rolex prices! The model’s 42mm dial is big enough to display a second time zone, making it a nifty timepiece.
The Cellini collection pays tribute to traditional timepieces with a modern touch. The name of this famous Moonphase watch series was inspired by an artist during the Italian Renaissance.
The materials of the Rolex Moonphase also represent a sense of luxury. Cases are either made of 18-carat white gold or Everose gold. A special double bezel (one domed and the other fluted) is topped on the iconic 39mm dial. The black or silver-plated “Rayon flame de la gloire” guilloche motif is also a signature in this series.
All of the models have a black or brown genuine leather strap fitted with an 18-carat gold buckle. The lunar cycle and the meteoric iron disc which represents the full moon in the dial are exclusive to this series.
The price of a Rolex Cellini depends on the Moonphase series model or dual-time design. The Rolex Cellini Moonphase usually has a higher price than the dual-time models. A silver Rolex in the series like the popular model 50525 is worth around $17,000. On the other hand, a cool black Rolex with dual time has a slightly lower retail price at around $15,380.
The Moonphase watch has an elegant and classic design paired with a practical function for the date display and lunar cycle. It is definitely the Rolex piece for men who are looking for something different on their wrist. But you should expect to shell out quite a bit of money because Rolex prices for this collection can go up to $20,000!
Back in the 1950s, the Rolex Day-Date was the first water-resistant and self-winding chronometer watch that displayed the day and the date. Placed at the 12 o’clock position right above the Rolex crown, its calendar window showcases the day fully spelled out. The Presidential bracelet makes this series even more exceptional.
All models in this series are either made of 18-carat gold or 950 platinum. As a well-known men’s Rolex watch, this model has been worn by numerous famous leaders. The Rolex presidential gold with the semi-circular three-piece links is a symbol of comfort and luxury. That alone makes it a must-have for men.
The new Day-Date highlights a self-winding mechanical 3255 calibre, making it one of the most precise timepieces from Rolex. The winding crown also features a patented twin lock double waterproof system, protecting the precious timepiece under all circumstances.
The Rolex 228238 is an eye-catching gold Rolex model and is one of the most popular pieces in the series. If you think that gold is a little bit too much, try another model with a more subtle design yet different from the usual black Rolex – the 228239 in the Rolex Day-Date 40 series. But you might get surprised after knowing the official Rolex prices of these pieces.
The piece is topped with an 18-carat white gold fluted bezel. This beauty is priced at $4100. Of course, there are still other rare models in the Day-Date series that cost much higher than expected. The 118135L is a good example.
This rose gold Rolex is fitted with a leather strap which is quite unusual in the Day-Date series. Its limited stock makes its retail price at $17,800. Some other pieces adorned with diamonds on the dial or arrayed on the bezel in this series even have a higher retail price, ranging from $44,870 to $57,700! Yes, Rolex prices can go this high!
The Rolex Milgauss is known for its resistance to magnetic fields. The series is designed for scientific professionals as it can withstand magnetic fields of up to 1000 gauss. This is a first-of-its-kind technology in the watch manufacturing industry!
The Rolex Milgauss features an eye-catching lighting-shaped orange seconds hand which pays tribute to scientists. Instead of the ordinary sapphire crystal, this special timepiece is fitted with Rolex’s first green sapphire crystal for reliable readability.
The most distinctive feature of this watch goes to its magnetic fields resistance which is quite a unique feature. The Oyster case features an anti-magnetic alloy shield, together with the self-winding mechanical 3131 calibre. This ensures the precision and smooth operation of the Milgauss Rolex.
Newer models in the series have several more paramagnetic parts in its heart, strengthening the protection of this precious watch.
Considering its unique aesthetic and impressive features, the Rolex Milgauss is surprisingly affordable. The model with the white dial fitted with a Rolex Milgauss green sapphire crystal is the most common design in the series.
On the other hand, the Rolex Milgauss blue has a rather spectacular colour for the dial. This blue Rolex 116400 GV has a great contrast to the orange seconds hand, making it a trendy and fashionable accessory.
Its official price is $8192 which is rather expensive but still a pretty good one considering Rolex prices in the market.
Throughout the years, Rolex has garnered the adulation of many. Every timepiece has only the best, state-of-the-art features which have cemented Rolex’s excellent reputation in the industry. Each Rolex watch is timeless and will only increase in value as the years go by.
Thus, it shouldn’t come as a surprise if you take a peek at various Rolex prices. Considering the limited amount of handcrafted timepieces produced by Rolex and their popularity amongst watch collectors, you should invest in the Rolex timepiece that has captured your heart. Every penny will be worth it!