The Daytona’s rise to fame started with its first release in 1963. Though it was not an immediate hit, popularity increased in 1988 with the release of the first Daytona with a Zenith El Primero movement, and an increased case size. After this point, the Daytona became a mainstream watch with soaring demands. In 2000, the reference 116520 was released, marking the transition from a Zenith movement to one made in-house by Rolex. In 2016, Rolex released the 116500LN, with an upgraded ceramic bezel.
Though the steel Daytona may be the most sought after, even models in precious metal such as the yellow gold 116508 and platinum 116506 trade significantly above MSRP. The 116508 has a special place in many watch collector’s hearts with its emerald green dial and association with John Mayer, while the platinum Daytona reference 116506 is significant in its own right as the 50th anniversary Daytona.