Omega is one of the older Swiss watch manufacturers, founded in 1848. However, the operation stayed small until the founder’s sons took over the business after his passing in 1879. To honor their father’s legacy, they transformed his shop into a world-class producer of premium Swiss timepieces. And today the brand is known for putting together its heritage with advanced innovation thereby, making it so valuable to collectors.
The Most expensive Omega speedster ever is the 1957 Speedmaster Ref. 2915-1 that was recently sold at an auction for a whopping $3.4 million on the 5th of November, 2022. At the auction house, the staff predicted the watch would be sold between $80,000 and $120,000, but to their utmost surprise, the final bid was a whopping $3.4 million, thereby breaking the record for the most expensive Omega watch ever sold. And it was an investor from China that made the winning bid. The current owner of the watch also received an Omega “Extract from the Archives” that confirmed the production of this specific watch to be November 22, 1957.
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The reference 2915-1 was produced between 1957 and 1959 and this makes it one of the rarest Speedmaster models ever made. Its first generation is widely known as “The Grail” of Speedmaster watches to those who collect them and within watch enthusiast communities. The reference 2915-1 was the first chronograph to ever feature the tachymeter scales on the bezel and not on the dial, and the influence it had on the watch industry is noteworthy, including several brands emulating this design feature. This collection is also the first Speedmaster to use the Omega in-house 321 calibre movement, which is considered a robust and accurate movement.
History of the Omega Speedster
This collection was released in 1957. At first, it was designed to be a car racing and sports watch that is synonymous with the Rolex Daytona, though it came out six years before the Daytona. The omega Speedmaster, including the $3.4 million Speedmaster Ref. 2915-1, is powered by the Calibre 321 movement that was created in 1946 by Albert Piguet. They also introduced the triple-register chronograph layout, domed Hésalite crystal, and high-contrast index markers.
Although these watches have their roots as sports watches, just like many high-end chronographs, they are also associated with aviation and space travel. And, Wally Schirra became the first individual to put on a Speedmaster in space in 1962. But the 1957 Omega Speedmaster remains one of the most sought-after watches by collectors.
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Why is the Omega Speedmaster So Special?
Omega watch brand has created a reputation for creating watches that deliver exceptional performance and extreme beauty. The brand also has some of the best chronograph features that make them highly functional. Its Speedmaster timepieces are the official watches of NASA and it was also the watch of choice for the fictional James Bond. And today many influential people and celebrities Ryan Gosling, Ron Howard, and more have these watches.
Why the 1957 Ref. 2915-1 is the Most Expensive Omega Speedster
If you are wondering why this 1957 Speedmaster broke the record for the most expensive Omega watch ever sold, then you should take a look at the factors below.
The Date It Was Released
All Speedmasters collections are famous among collectors, including the contemporary models. But the Omega Speedmaster Ref. 2915-1 is one of the first Speedmasters ever produced, as the collection was released that year.
Exclusivity and Scarcity
Omega has mastery in creating scarcity, therefore releasing some limited editions to drive up value. And the Omega Speedmaster Ref. 2915-1 falls into this category. The brand only produced a limited quantity of Ref. 2915-1 timepieces between 1957 and 1959 thereby making them extremely hard to find.
The Brand Price Has Continued to Rise
Before the previous record-holder in 2018, Omega Speedmaster watches had increased in value over the past 20 years. And it makes them a great investment for serious investors.
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The 1957 Omega Speedmaster Ref. 2915-1 Details
Here, we are going to take a look at what the 1957 Omega Speedmaster is made of that made it sell for that price.
It has a plain appearance that is deceiving at first glimpse. Its design comprises a brown leather band, a tropical brown dial, and a 38 mm stainless steel case that makes it a large, robust watch. But, on second glance, you will notice the little details like the company’s seahorse logo engraved on the back.
Its Movement Type
This model features the Cal. 321 movement style. Although many contemporary Omega Speedmaster watches feature this movement, it was rare among the early Speedmaster models. It also has a manual wind movement type.
When you observe the watch, you will notice that it is quite an old watch. But this model aged beautifully while still retaining impeccable quality in the bezel, case, hands, and dial. When it is integrated with its low serial number, you will find out it truly is a one-of-a-kind watch.
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Most Expensive Modern Omega Speedmaster
Aside from the 1957 Omega Speedmaster Ref. 2915-1 expensive watch, we would take a view at 4 other most expensive Omega timepieces.
Omega Chrono Chime Chronograph Watch Ref. 522.214.171.124.03.001
This Chrono Chime has an 18K Sedna Gold case that is inspired by the 2nd generation Speedmaster, the CK 2998, the first watch worn in space. Its blue aventurine dial features an inner bezel and subdials in 18K Sedna Gold. The hour markers and minute hands are in diamond-polished 18K Sedna Gold.
Also, the red-tipped dial hands and blue CVD subdial hands give extra touches of color to the display. Its features include an anti‑magnetic, chronograph, chronometer, master chronometer certified, numbered edition, small seconds, tachymeter, and a transparent case back. Its key materials are sapphire crystal and Sedna gold. This timepiece is estimated at the price of $435,00.
Omega Calibre 321 Ref 3126.96.36.199.01.001
The Calibre 321 is an important part of the Speedmaster’s original space history. Its 39.70 mm case is in stainless steel and it is stirred by the 3rd generation style worn during America’s first spacewalk in 1965. It has a bezel ring in polished black ceramic with the tachymeter scale in white enamel. It is estimated at the price of $86,400.
Its black step dial features familiar Moonwatch hands, a vintage OMEGA logo, a small second sub-dial, a 30-minute recorder, and a 12-hour recorder with a central chronograph hand. And you can view the Calibre 321 inside through the sapphire-crystal caseback. It features a chronograph, small seconds, tachymeter, and transparent case back and its key materials are stainless steel and sapphire crystal.
2009 Apollo 1140th Anniversary OMEGA REF. 3188.8.131.52.01.001
This timepiece was made in a limited edition of 69 examples to mark the 40th anniversary of man’s conquest of the moon. The Speedmaster model made in platinum has a unique yellow-gold medallion on the small seconds counter that represents the mission patch of Apollo 11 and it is repeated in gold, on the case back.
The watch presentation box also contains a 42 mm sterling silver medal with special engravings. This timepiece is also protected by hesalite, the same robust, shatter-proof acrylic crystal that is found on the original moonwatch. This timepiece is estimated at the price of $69,700.
Omega Moonphase Emerald Ref 304.93.44.52.99.003
This Moonphase timepiece enhances the classic Speedmaster design with its exquisite materials and precision. It has a 44.25 mm case made from platinum-gold, while its green ceramic bezel ring includes a brushed platinum liquid metal tachymeter scale.
It features a sand-blasted platinum-gold dial that is brought to life by its 18K white gold indexes that are set with baguette-cut emeralds and its dial is completed by a magnified hand on the date subdial and blackened hours, minutes, and central seconds hands.
It features an anti‑magnetic, chronograph, chronometer, master chronometer certified, moon phase, small seconds, tachymeter, and transparent case back. Its key materials include platinum, ceramic, liquid metal, and sapphire crystal. This timepiece is estimated at the price of $57,500.
Frequently Asked Questions About Omega Speedster
How Much Do Omega Watches Cost?
The price of an Omega watch will largely depend on the style, age, and condition of the watch you want to purchase. Their prices fall somewhere in the low four figures up to six figures and in a few cases, over a million dollars. The most expensive Omega Speedster was an early 1957 and was sold for $3.4 million with ref 2915-1.
What Do I Consider When Purchasing an Omega Speedmaster?
Irrespective of what Omega Speedmaster you want to buy, you should consider the age, condition, model, and authenticity of the watch.
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