It’s no secret that steel sports Rolex are in their own class these days. Hell, people are even willing to sell a kidney for a Lange 1 in steel. As steel Rolex auction results routinely break new highs, it seems worth considering their precious metal-based siblings as an alternative. In the decade of its release, the 18K GMT was the ‘fuck-you money’ choice of model. By the 90s and early naughties, the gold sports Rolex was seen as completely tasteless. So out-of-vogue, in fact, that they barely shifted. Today, the faux-pas seems to have passed and the gold GMT looks as attractive as it ever has.
Today’s rose two-tone GMT-II is as much a grail as any steel model (the white gold and meteorite GMT-IIs maybe even moreso). Maybe I’m off here, but I don’t think vintage gold has quite come back to trend. But it will. If I’m sure of any trend in vintage, its that precious metal is on track to be tasteful again. And that, the slow shift of public perception, is why an 18K GMT still represents a value buy today.
18K gold is considerably softer than steel, and that is perhaps what one need be most careful of when buying vintage precious metal. Despite that, this example is particularly crisp. Honest wear on the case faces, but with sharp edges. The classic GMT nipple dial is evenly worn.
I tend to wear old sports pieces on straps. The gold bracelets these came with scratched too easily for how I wear them and something about the strap aesthetic just works on pieces like this. If you can find an example that comes that way on the market, all the better for you and your bank account. If you’re considering an alternative GMT, it doesn’t get much better.
Find this golden child of the 80s here from Analog Shift for 22500 USD.