VIDEO: History Of The Rolex Daytona

The Rolex Daytona is without question the most desired watch in the world, demanding a five year plus waiting list for its highly sought after steel version. So as the Daytona celebrates its 50 year anniversary this year, we take a closer look at the history of this iconic watch in our exclusive Rolex Daytona video (above).

Created by Rolex in 1963, this legendary model has established an extraordinary track record in the world of motor racing thanks to its reliability and performance. Known simply as the ‘Daytona,’ it has risen to the rank of icon as the most famous and most coveted chronograph in the world. 

Before lending its name to one of Rolex’s most emblematic models, the City of Daytona in Florida, with its famous long straight beach, forged its own legend as the capital of land speed records from 1903. Daytona the place and Daytona the watch both speak volumes about the long-standing and privileged ties that bind Rolex and automobile racing, whether in endurance or speed.


The city of Daytona in Florida has gone down in history as the world capital of speed. Motor racing has been taking place on its beach since 1903 and many world land speed records have been broken there. Today, Daytona is considered in the US to be the “world centre of automobile racing.”


The Oyster Perpetual Cosmograph Daytona is the consummate Rolex chronograph. Efficient, precise, legible, roburst, reliable and self-winding, it is also timeless and highly prestigious. Fifty years after its launch in 1963, this embodiment of perfection is the product of a long maturation process. Simply ‘Cosmograph’ initially, it acquired the inscriptions ‘Oyster,’ ‘Perpetual,’ ‘Daytona,’ and ‘Superlative Chronometer Officially Certified’ over the years, chronicling a legend in the watch industry.

The figure of Paul Newman will forever be linked to the legend of the Cosmograph Daytona. For decades from the 1970’s on, the legendary Hollywood star and passionate racing car driver wore a Cosmograph Daytona in town as well as on the race track – a model with a particular dial, which collectors would associate both with his name and his aura.

Fifty years after its creation, the Cosmograph Daytona remains in a class of its own among sport chronographs and continues to evolve. With the latest evolution, in 2013, it is the first Oyster model in the Professional range to be offered in platinum, fited with an ice blue dial.


View the collections | Book an appointment | Latest Rolex News