It is really true that the “Paul Newman” Rolex Daytona has generated so much attention and excitement. Calling it a vintage classic doesn’t do it justice – it’s like calling Superman a strong man. But what is it that makes Rolex enthusiasts so fervent? Or perhaps it has to do with the staggering increase in resale prices over the past few decades, which have reached absolutely astronomical levels in recent years.
While the Paul Newman Daytona is out of reach for most collectors’ budgets, it is still an exciting watch to research and learn about. This guide is intended to provide a clearer picture of what many consider to be the greatest vintage best replica rolex watch on the planet. What exactly makes the Daytona ref. 6239 a Paul Newman Rolex? What are its features?
Beginning in the 1960s, Rolex started offering a unique dial variation for the Daytona chronograph. Officially named the “Exotic Dial” by the Rolex catalog, it was an aesthetic departure from the regular Daytona dial, featuring stepped minute tracks and an Art Deco-style chronograph font. Today, these exotic dials are collectively referred to as “Paul Newman” dials and Rolex chronographs containing them are known as “Paul Newman Daytona” watches, but we will discuss the origin of the “Paul Newman” moniker later.
As they are so few in number and in such high demand these days, finding an authentic Rolex Daytona with an exotic dial in good condition is no easy task. However, it is also important to note that while the price difference between a traditional vintage Rolex Daytona and a Daytona with an exotic dial is significant, the only difference between them is purely cosmetic.
While early Daytona replica luxury watches with exotic dials were not popular with Rolex customers, that soon changed after they became associated with the famous actor and race car driver Paul Newman. In a genius marketing move, the Italian auction house is said to have exaggerated the fact that Paul Newman himself wore a Daytona with an exotic dial and began referring to these particular models as “Paul Newman” Daytona watches. This hype was fueled by a photo of Paul Newman himself, in which the Daytona ref. 6239 with its white dial can be clearly seen.
Newman’s Rolex Daytona 6239 was presented by his wife Joanne Woodward. In addition to possessing superb acting skills, Paul Newman was also an accomplished racing driver. To reflect this, Woodward engraved the back of his Daytona with the words “Drive Carefully for Me”. This charming nod to Newman’s love of motorsports only further adds to the watch’s fame in many collector circles.