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You already know the Daytona story, so we won't go regurgitating it yet again. We've yet to meet any collector or enthusiast who doesn't desire one for their collection, and for good reason. Rolex's brilliant motorsports chronograph is a winner in any variant, vintage or modern. And while current ones admittedly don't generally do as much for us as a nicely-aged example, this one is likely the exception to the rule.
What you're looking at is a Reference 16520 Cosmograph, affectionally known as the "Zenith Daytona" because of its automatic chronograph mechanism that is based on the revered high-beat El Primero movement. For those who may not know, Rolex didn't actually offer an in-house automatic chronograph movement in the Daytona line until 2000, and having left the manual-winding Valjoux movements on which they were founded in 1988, it relied on Zenith to provide the drivetrain for their flagship chronograph.
"Zenith Daytonas" were made for a little over a decade, and have already become incredibly desirable by collectors. With near-perfect proportions, the 16520 has become an icon unto itself, a true modern classic.
Adding to the allure of this piece is the coveted 'Patrizzi' dial, a moniker that denotes the discolored sub-dial rings, a feature that is the result of the use of an organic varnish that allowed the silver elements of the dial to oxidize over time. Effectively a manufacturing error, the 'Patrizzi' dial adds a splash of uniqueness to these pieces, each having aged and darkened slightly differently since their manufacture.
With its tireless Zenith movement, unstoppable lineage and just the right amount of uniqueness, these Rolex Reference 16520 Daytonas might be some of the coolest contemporary Rolex chronos out there.
Steel Oyster case is approximately 40mm (excluding the crown). Rolex Reference 16520. Calibre 4030 Automatic Chronograph Movement by Zenith. Circa 1998.
Overall condition: Case is in excellent condition, never polished, and shows only minimal signs of wear from occasional use. 'Patrizzi' dial shows lightly discolored sub-register rings. Hands are as new. Steel tachymetre bezel shows only faint signs of wear. Case back retains original factory sticker. Original pushers and Rolex-signed Trip-Lock crown.
Includes original steel 20mm Rolex Oyster bracelet (78390/503B) and two 20mm nylon straps by Crown & Buckle.
Also includes original inner and outer boxes, hang tag and original papers.