In 1955, Rolex introduced a replica watch the company called the Rolex GMT-Master, which had a red and blue covering or band that looked similar to the coloration of the soda “Pepsi.”
And, it’s this coloration of red, white and blue with how the watch ended up with the “Pepsi” nickname.
Since it was first introduced to the market, there have been many excellent replica GMT-Master Pepsi models for people to choose from. What were the models that Rolex pushed of the GMT-Master line?
Though the initial GMT-master Rolex watch was designed in the Pepsi coloration of red and blue, there are other band colors offered today, including but not limited to black, brown and blue. If you want the Pepsi-looking version, the watches you want to keep an eye out for are:
This was the first GMT-master watch Rolex designed, which was initially made of Bakelite due to how fragile it was. Over time, the watch was designed using aluminum. It was in production from 1954 until 1959 and is a vintage classic. It’s been said (though not extensively clarified) that, in the 1950s, there was a Pan Am version of Rolex GMT with a two-color aluminum bezel and white dial.
This version of watch, which ran in production for more than 20 years (1959 to 1980), is another well-known Rolex with a red, white and blue bezel (Pepsi-look) and 40mm stainless steel case/ It has a caliber 1575 automatic movement with both GMT and date functions. This watch version is considered most popular with its fitted Mk5 dial with a faded large font insert.
This watch circa began in 1981 and lasted for seven years until 1988. This watch model didn’t last as long as other versions and was seen as a traditional model between the older generation and newer generation of technology with outstanding technological improvements such as a caliber 3075, better accuracy and stronger, more modern movement. Due to its short production line, fewer watches of this model exist in the market.
One of the most notable changes of the 16750 version from the 1675 version is the quick set date function, which made date setting far easier than ever before. There were some slight differences in their appearances, but the quick set date function distinguished them.
GMT-Master ref. 16700 – This watch model replaced the 16750 and was considerably less expensive than its predecessor. It had a production run time of 10 years (1988 – 1999). It’s got a caliber of 3175 with a pressure-proof of 330-feet. Its glass is comprised of sapphire crystal material. One of Rolex’s features to this watch line is the non-independent 24-hour hand, but it also introduced a thinner case compared to other models.
Rolex’s line of GMT-Master certainly underwent changes through the years and decades, which is why it came up with a number of the now-called transitional models such as the GMT-Master ref. 16750 watch.
Interestingly enough, the GMT Master and GMT-Master II have quite a few similarities between them, but there were just as many differences. The GMT-Master II watch was introduced in 1982 despite it eventually overtaking the fine line of GMT-Master watches. What did the GMT-Master II watches have that its predecessor did not?
- Primary hour hand and 24-hour hand that could be set independent of one another
- Letter references, not just four-digit reference numbers (BLRO stood for blue BL and rouge RO)
- White gold version (no steel on the GMT-Master II Pepsi version)
If you find a stainless steel GMT-Master, realize it comes from the first line of GMT-Master models. You have your choice of vintage as well as modern models to choose from.
Most Rolex GMT-Master fans agree that the latest GMT-Master II watch, with its red and blue stainless steel Cerachrome bezel, is one of the famous watches on the market. Until recently, it’s only been fake GMT-Master II ceramic blue and red bezels with 18k white gold watch.
With the “Pepsi-coloration” of the Rolex GMT-Master, it makes it easier for people to afford this version in the vast colors the company has to offer.