Stainless steel pre-owned gentleman’s 1997 'U' Serial Rolex GMT Master 16700 automatic wrist watch, Black dial with luminescent hourly dot, baton and chevron markers, date aperture to three o’clock, Red/Blue rotating bezel, tonneau-shaped case fitted to a brushed finish Oyster bracelet with Oyster clasp. This watch is also fitted with a unique crystal exhibition case back which offers a clear view of the internal movement (the original case back is included with the watch).
Case width 40mm (excluding crown)
Black Dial with rare 'SWISS' mark at 6 o'clock
24 hour display
Second time zone
Magnifier over date display
Rolex Calibre 3137 Automatic Movement
Blue / Red 'Pepsi' Rotating Bezel
Stainless Steel Case
Crystal Exhibition Case Back (original Rolex case back included)
Stainless Steel Oyster Bracelet
Oyster Clasp with extension
Supplied with original Rolex box and TWS 12 Month Warranty
Watch Register checked
In 1954, Pan-Am was one of the first airlines to fly transatlantic routes non-stop and they discovered a need for a watch for pilots that could display two time-zones.
The solution came from Rolex in the form of the GMT-Master that displayed an extra hand which took 24 hours to complete a single rotation of the dial. By having a 24-hour indication on the watch bezel, pilots were able to see both the time zone they were flying from as well as the one they were travelling to, or the so-called Greenwich Mean Time zone that gave the GMT its name. GMT was the original time zone in which all flight plans and weather reports were issued.
This eliminated mistakes and made it easier for pilots to navigate through several time zones. The GMT-Master also became popular with airline passengers because if you knew the time at the place you departed from it had a positive influence on jetlag.
The first GMT-Master was the Reference 6242 and was introduced in 1954 with a bezel made from Bakelite. Since this was a fairly fragile material it was quickly replaced with a steel version. The sought-after Reference 1675 GMT-Master was produced from 1959 to 1980 and makes it one of the most enduring Rolex models.
The GMT-Master II was introduced in the early 1980’s and although it looked virtually identical to the original model the main difference was the introduction of a function in the movement that enabled the large hand to jump at a pre-set interval without stopping either the second hand or the GMT hand. This allowed a third time zone to be displayed.
The GMT-Master was one of Rolex’s ‘tool-watches’ that were designed to carry out a specific task to solve a specific problem. Originally only available in steel, gold versions later appeared and the original black bezel was joined with the famous ‘Pepsi’ (blue/red) and ‘Coke’ (black/red) offerings.
The GMT-Master II is still in production in 2020 at Rolex and now produced with a ceramic bezel. The black/blue ‘Batman’ version being very popular.
1997 ROLEX GMT Master 'PEPSI' 16700
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