Sought-after vintage Rolexes are always going to be a hot commodity, but this has only become truer as the brand’s new timepieces become increasingly hard to get your hands on.
Take, for example, the “Big Crown” Submariner 6200 from 1955 that Tropical Watch just posted for sale. Even without its original box or papers, the gorgeous timepiece, which shows each of its 66 years of age in the best way possible, still carries an asking price of over half a million dollars.
The “Big Crown” 6200 isn’t the rarest of Submariner references but it is one of the most desirable. Introduced in 1954, it was designed for professional divers and has a water resistance of up to 200 meters. Like the best Rolexes, there’s more to it than just its functionality, though. Specifically, the “Big Crown” 6200 is notable because of its distinctive look. It features a bezel without graduation markings, a gilt Explorer 3-6-9 dial, long hour hand and wide-beveled lugs. It’s one of those timepieces that mixes style and substance just right.
Although it was recently serviced—or “overhauled,” according to the sales listing—this particular example still has all the elements that have helped make the “Big Crown” 6200 a classic. Even better, these details all show the timepiece’s age, something you actually want from a vintage watch. This includes a bezel insert that has faded to vibrant purple; an aged dial that has developed a speckled patina and lume that has taken on a warn golden hue. Other choice details include the original crystal’s extensive crazing and a 37mm case that hasn’t been polished since the watch was brand new. The bracelet isn’t original—its clasp bears a 1969 date code—but the watch’s superficial details remain basically untouched.
It’s easy to see why someone would want this particular “Big Crown” 6200. Be prepared to spend big to make it yours, though, specifically $558,350. That may seem like a lot for a watch without the original documentation, even one this beautiful, but it’s also to be expected at the moment. An increase in demand for Rolexes, along with supply chain disruptions due to Covid-19, has led to a serious shortage of the brand’s timepieces and a corresponding jump in prices for new and pre-owned watches alike.
No one ever said collecting watches, especially Rolexes, was going to be affordable. If you’re interested in this example, you can reach out to Tropical Watch for more details.