There was much excitement leading up to the auction of Steve McQueen’s Heuer Monaco watch gifted to Haig Alltounian, McQueen’s personal mechanic but equally, just as much anticipation built up for the auction of Paul Newman’s “Big Red” Rolex Daytona.
Auction house Phillips saw both watches reach incredible prices. The Heuer Monaco was one of six watches from the set of the film Le Mans and the last time one of these was auctioned off in 2012, it fetched $799,500 USD. Now however, this particular Manoco reached $2,208,000 USD ($2,930,713 AUD) signalling new heights for a Monaco watch that was kept in wonderful condition.
But this pales into significance price wise to the Paul Newman Daytona which has sold for $5,475,000 USD ($7,267,055 AUD).
Believe it or not, this isn’t the highest recorded price at auction for a Paul Newman Daytona watch, that honour going to a previous listing in 2017 which sold for $17.75m USD ($23,559,859 AUD).
The increase in vintage and collector watch prices shows our fascination with mechanical things continues to grow, and the classic car market is speculated to mirror that growth in the following decades.