The History of the Rolex GMT-Master
Before we dive into describing the finer details of the Rolex GMT-Master II, it’s important to look at the
watch model that came before it – the Rolex GMT-Master. The first Rolex GMT-Master was introduced
in 1954 and created in response to more frequent air travel. Originally designed for pilots and navigators
to use in their daily job duties, the Rolex GMT-Master attracted a loyal following with these individuals
as well as others outside these two occupations.
The first Rolex GMT-Master was Reference 6542. This watch was designed in collaboration with Pan
American Airways and distributed to the crew members for use during the lengthier flights. The premier
Rolex GMT-Master had a Bakelite bezel insert to start with but changed to an aluminum bezel in 1956,
which was a sturdier option.
The Rolex GMT-Master that followed was the Reference 1675 introduced in 1959. This watch model
featured a calibre 1565, until it was replaced with a calibre 1575 in 1964. This watch has a 50m water
resistance level, crown guards, and a dial inscription, “Superlative Chronometer Officially Certified.” The
Reference 1675 is available in a variety of styles, including a gold material with leather, Oyster, or
Jubilee strap and a steel/gold collaboration with an Oyster or Jubilee bracelet.
In 1981, another Rolex GMT-Master watch was released. The Rolex GMT-Master Reference 16750 was
introduced at this time and produced until 1988. This Rolex watch model version has a calibre 3075,
water resistance rating of 100m, and two dial versions, a matte style and a glossy variety.
The Rolex GMT-Master “Pepsi” model, Reference 16700, was released in 1988 and was produced
through 1999. This watch has a red and blue color scheme, calibre 3175, non-independent hour hand,
and ability for the wearer to reference two time zones at once.
The History of the Rolex GMT-Master II
It was the year 1983 when the first Rolex GMT-Master II was released. Reference 16760 was introduced
with an independently adjustable hour hand, rotatable bezel, and 40mm case, hence the nickname, “Fat
Lady.” The inaugural GMT-Master II also features a sapphire crystal and white gold indices. This Rolex is
constructed of stainless steel and boasts a vibrant red and black color combination.
The GMT-Master II version that followed the Reference 16760 and was released in 2005 was the
Reference 116718, which was a gold version of the Reference 16760. This new Rolex version has a
Triplock winding crown, larger case/hands/hour markers, and new ceramic bezel.
Following that gold Rolex model were the Reference 116710 and Reference 126710 versions. The
Reference 116710 was released in 2007. This watch model version is similar in some ways to the
Reference 116718 but was a stainless steel version. The Reference 116710 has a calibre 3186
movement, 100m water resistance, Cyclops lens, ceramic bezel, and blue Parachrom hairspring.
In 2018, Rolex released the Reference 126710BLRO at Baselworld. The brand kept with the color scheme
seen in the “Pepsi” model, Reference 16700, and offers an eye-catching red and blue color tone. This
GMT version has an Oystersteel construction, Jubilee bracelet, calibre 3285, and three-day power
TheWristWatcherInc.com offers an extensive array of Rolex GMT-Master II watches to add to your
Affordability of the Rolex GMT-Master II
The Rolex GMT-Master II comes with various price tags attached. Some of more affordable Rolex GMT-
Master II models include the Reference 16713, approximately $12,000, and the Reference 116710,
Some more expensive Rolex GMT-Master II watches include the Reference 116759, approximately
$80,000, and the Reference 116758, approximately $90,000. Both watch models are gemstone-laden
Rolex GMT-Master II watches that are sure to catch your eye.
No matter how much you are looking to spend on a new or pre-owned Rolex GMT-Master II watch,
TheWristWatcherInc.com has an extraordinary collection to help you start (and finish!) your search for
the perfect Rolex watch.