What makes The Rolex GMT Pepsi so desirable?
When you hear the word ‘Pepsi’, the first thought to strike your mind is the famous black sugary soda. But for a watch lover, the term hits different. Since last month, Pepsi has been on the lips of all Rolex enthusiasts. And, why not! The famous Rolex pilot’s watch with a bi-colour bezel (iconic blue and red) has everyone talking. It is known as ‘PEPSI’.
‘Pepsi’ is the name of the latest US£10,180.73 Rolex GMT- Master II. The timepiece arrived back in 1954, and its moniker has been presented its moniker because of the striking blue and red bezel colour.
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Before disclosing the Top 6 variants of this most desirable model, let’s dig into its history.
Brief History about the ROLEX GMT-MASTER
The first Rolex Pepsi appeared in the mid-1950s. Rolex has made the red and blue bezel in aluminium, Bakelite, and now Cerachrom ceramic. A Rolex Pepsi timepiece came out in 2014 with an 18ct white gold, and the cost was £27,811.77.
However, the famous timepiece’s Jubilee five-piece links bracelet design made its first appearance in 1945. This model was considered a bit outdated by the younger generation.
6 Most Interesting Facts to know about the iconic GMT MASTER PEPSI
- The first-ever red and blue Rolex GMT came out in 1954 with a Bakelite bezel.
- Rolex 6542 is known by the nickname ‘Pussy Galore’ after actress Honor Blackman’s sported the watch throughout the 1964 James Bond movie ‘Goldfinger’.
- Rolex replaced the Bakelite bezel with a metal bezel in 1956 until 1959
- One of the most sought-after classic Rolex ‘Pepsi’ models (1959-1980) is 1675. This variant is prevalent for its reliable calibre 1565 and 1575 movements.
- Many vintage watch fanatics believe that the creamy colour of the hour markers caused by ageing is a cream.
- Many big names like Dizzy Gillespie, artist Pablo Picasso, and Che Guevara, and Fidel Castro wore the model.
The Rolex Pepsi GMT is probably one of the most easily recognizable watches on the planet. The model is for the pilots in the era of transcontinental flights.
Did you know that the Iconic Blue and Red from the Pepsi variant hold a secret message?
The colours of Pan American Airways have inspired the characteristic red and blue bezel. After all, they are the ones to commission the watch from Rolex. And, for watch lovers, the colours red and blue represent the difference between day and night. The stunning Rolex Pepsi keeps evolving through the years, and each of them bears a striking colour-way.
Let’s check out the most prominent models that are available with a Pepsi bezel.
6 most popular ROLEX PEPSI models are:
1. GMT-Master Ref. 6542
Production Year: 1954-1959
Metal: Stainless Steel 38mm case
Bezel: Bakelite Pepsi
Calibre: 1036, 1065, and 1066
- The Rolex GMT Master Ref. 6542 line started with a request from Pan Am Airways. They wanted a watch to display a second-time zone and show the time for both departures and destination airports.
- The first Rolex GMT-Master came out in 1954
- The first-ever GMT-Master model was the Ref.6542 that came in an iconic blue and red bezel. It was made of Bakelite and had no crown guards.
- The GMT-Master 6542 model soon earned the name ‘Pussy Galore’ amongst the fans.
2. GMT-Master Ref. 1675
Production Year: 1959-1980
Metal: Stainless steel 40mm case with new crown guards
Bezel: Aluminum Pepsi bezel
Dials: Gilt-gloss or matte black
Calibre: 1565 or 1575
- The Rolex GMT-Master 1675 was one of the longest-running models in the history of Rolex.
- Till the 1960s, the extra hour hand of the model had a small arrow. A more sizeable red-coloured arrowhead changed this.
- Matte dials changed the early gilt dials during 1966
- Ref.1675 was the first Rolex sports watch that was available in both Jubilee and Oyster bracelets.
3. GMT-Master Ref.16750
Production Year: 1980-1988
Metal: Stainless steel 40mm case
Bezel: Aluminum Pepsi or Black bezel
Dials: Matte or Glossy
Calibre: 3075 with quickset date
- The Rolex Ref.16750 features a quickset date which allows the date to be set independently from the hour hand.
- This model features a hacking feature. When you pull the crown, the secondhand stops, allowing the wearer to set a precise time.
- The feature of water resistance is improved.
- The 16750 variant is a transitional model under the Rolex GMT-Master II.
4. GMT-Master Ref.16700/ 16710
Production Year: 1988-2007
Metal: Stainless Steel 40mm case
Bezel: Aluminum Pepsi, Black, and Coke bezel
Calibre: 3175, 3185, 3186
- The Rolex Ref.16700 is the brand’s last ‘Fixed’ GMT movement watch
- The Pepsi colour-way came in the Ref.16710 edition
- A sleeker case replaced the thicker case of the 16760
- A sapphire crystal replaced the acrylic one in 16700
- The Rolex GMT-Master II 16710 is the last variant to sport a Pepsi bezel made of anodized aluminium
5. GMT-Master Ref.116719 BLRO
Production Year: 2014-2018
Metal: White Gold
Bezel: Cerachrom bezel
- The 116719 BLRO comes in 18k white gold rather than stainless steel
- The Triplock system replaced the Twin-lock crown, which features three sealed zones for more sturdiness
- This model can better withstand higher magnetic fields and temperature changes
6. GMT-Master Ref.126710 BLRO
Production Year: 2018-present
Metal: Oyster steel 40mm case
Bezel: Cerachrom Pepsi bezel
Bracelet: Oyster or Jubilee
- The 126710 BLRO brings back the Pepsi to the sports watch roots
- The new variant offers 70hours of power reserve and a precision of +2/-2 seconds/ day
- The Jubilee bracelet is unlike any other Jubilee material. And is designed especially for the 126710 BLRO.
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