Solid Gold Skeleton-Dial Rolex Daytona

December 01, 2019

Gold Rolex La Montoya Limited Edition Daytona.

There was a question in Quora asking why Rolex didn't have a transparent case.  The same question could be asked about why Rolex doesn't use skeletal dials.  Well, the Rolex La Montoya Limited Edition Daytona has both.  Rolex dedicated this unique timepiece to Juan Pablo Montoya, famous race car driver - 3 time Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona champion.  Montoya has won the Daytona 24 in 2007, 2008, and 2013, the Indianapolis 500, and the Grand Prix of Monaco.  His greatness is embodied in this ultimate timepiece bearing his engraved name.  

This timepiece was crafted by Artisans de Genève - watchmakers of the highest order who work to personalize timepieces to fit you specific requirements.  This timepiece was originally priced at $70,000.  However, only 42 of these watches were ever produced, making them exceptionally rare.

This exceptional timepiece took 2 years to develop and the help of 100 Swiss craftsmen.  Starting with a standard gold Rolex Daytona reference 116508Artisans de Genève modified the skeleton Rolex 4130 movement by hand and added a 21 carat yellow gold rotor and other elements inside the movement so that the beauty of the timepiece would be stunning through the sapphire glass on both the front and back.  A carbon forged bezel replaces the standard black bezel on regular Rolex Daytona's.  However, the 100 meter waterproof resistance remains the same.  

The 3 dials on the timepiece are colored in yellow, blue and red - representing the colors of the Columbian flag - Montoya's native country.  A red tip is added to the second hand - a nice touch to an overwhelmingly spectacular timepiece. 

A stainless steel version of this timepiece is also made - off the base reference 116520 model.  The outstanding excellence of this timepiece is unmistakable.  It is hard to tell what a timepiece of this magnitude would fetch in an auction today.  However, the high demand for Rolex and for Daytonas in general would make this timepiece's value soar.  

The Artisans de Genève were smart to retain much of the standard excellence of the Daytona timepiece.  The 40 mm case remains a perfect size for most Rolex owners.  It provides a 72 hour power reserve.  The yellow gold Oyster bracelet with folding clasp remains untouched.  This timepiece retains all of the Chonometer and Tachymeter functions of any Rolex Daytona.  It has the ability to time laps and account for the speed of the car up to 500 mph or kph.

The Rolex Daytona "La Montoya" is an outstanding timepiece.  Although it takes a considerable Mod to make this timepiece, all of the exquisite features of the original Daytona remain intact.  It is amazing that Rolex has not started to develop skeletal dial timepiece or adding a see-through sapphire back on its Rolex lineup.  Perhaps the success of this modded version will inspire Rolex to custom design some timepieces to add these features in future models.  I would especially love to see them add a transparent back to the Presidential Day Date.  Why hide such beauty from the world?

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