Best Rolex Daytona Homage Watches (That Don't Break The Bank)
The Rolex Daytona has been on most watch collectors radars since the 60s when it was first released. The stunning dial with easy to identify pushers and protected crown, along with the tachymeter bezel are all absolutely iconic. The problem is always that the price is iconic as well, at well over 10 thousand dollars.
So, I set out to find the best homages, but super affordable and higher end (but still very affordable) so that you can easily find the Rolex of your dreams without emptying your bank account.
Let’s see some of the best homages on the market right now…
Our Top Picks
1. Invicta Speedway
Models: 9211, 9212, 3644, 9223
if you are looking for a near perfect homage of the Daytona then the Invicta Speedway is all that and more. Even the name suggests car racing, just like the Daytona!
All the elements are there with the centered 3 sub-dials for the chronograph, the number bezel (units per hour) and the pointed tips on the hour markers. There are really only a few differences such as the date window (which the Daytona lacks) and the sub-dials are in a different position.
Oh, and one is over 15 thousand dollars, and the other is less than one hundred. Can you guess which is which?
2. Seiko Chronograph
Models: SSB031, SSB025, SSB033, SSB027
Seiko are always a great (and affordable) alternative to any watch you might be dreaming of, and the SSB chronographs are worthy contenders here.
With the tachymeter bezel, big push buttons for the 3-dial chronograph and the clear and legible dial are all signs of a Daytona. Of course, there are a few small differences like the ordering of the sub-dials, the colored second hand and the inclusion of a date window at 4-5 o’clock. But otherwise it is a real homage.
3. Stuhrling Original Forumula i
Models: 891Z.01, 891Z.02, 891Z.03, 891Z.04
An American owned brand that was inspired by an old-school Swiss watchmaker (Max Stührling) Stuhrling makes watches on par with Seiko. With great attention to detail and affordable yet reliable watches, you almost can’t go wrong.
The Original Formula i model is very close to the Daytona in almost every detail. If you look at the tips of the hour markers and where the word “chronograph” is over the subdial, you will appreciate how much effort they have gone to.
All this with the affordable cost make this one of the best choices in this list.
4. Henry Jay Specialty Aquamaster
The Henry Ray Aquamaster is another interesting homage, but with a few differences. The look in terms of colors is very much like one of the lesser worn Daytona Cosmographs you can find, but it does exist.
The bezel and chronograph buttons are all on point, as are the position of the dials. However this watch does not have a standard hour/min/sec timer but instead uses the dials for day/day and GMT time. So, if these are more useful for you, then it’s also a great option.
5. Tissot T-Spot V8
Unlike the majority of the homages on the affordable end of this list, this one from Tissot is actually Swiss Made. And, it is still only hundreds, not thousands of dollars.
The similarities to the Daytona are all there, but Tissot have not gone all out to copy it. They have Arabic numbers on the hours at 4, 8 and 12 o’clock. The date window is at 3 o’clock, and the crown is not protected like on the original.
Nonetheless, this is a stunning and affordable alternative with Swiss Made features sapphire glass.
6. ORIENT NEO 70's
Models: WV0041TX, WV0031UZ, WV0021UZ
It’s no surprise to see Orient on the homage list again. This time with a reasonable homage to the Daytona. They have veered a little from the original’s path, which is sometimes a good thing.
This watch has an inner minute train around the bezel instead of the Tachymeter option on the original. The crown also does not have the large protection lugs around it. And like most homages here, there is a date window at 4-5 o’clock too.
This is the classic “reverse panda” style of watch (see the eyes?) but there are a few others and some variations on the dial available from Orient too.
7. Casio Edifice
Stretching the boundaries of what is truly a homage, this Casio Edifice model has many of the elements, but also strays quite a bit. The main difference is in the bezel and case itself, as you can see in the image here.
The rest of the features of the Daytona are there with the Tachymeter bezel, 3 sub-dial chronograph and protected crown.
To me, it is just a question of whether you like the unique look they have given this model.
8. TAG Heuer Formula 1
TAG Heuer are another Swiss watch maker that are not on the cheap end of the scale, however compared to a Rolex they are certainly more affordable. And, given that they are a top-end manufacturer, you know you are getting a stunning watch.
The Formula 1 series from them has a few different models, but the ones above are very much inspired by the Daytona.. The Tachmetre bezel, the centered 3 dial chronometer and the otherwise clean dial are all hat tips to Rolex.
Of course, you also get some better than average specs with such a watch like an anti-reflective sapphire crystal, titanium bezel and 200m water resistance.
9. Zenith El Primero Chronograph
Zenith are another top-end Swiss watch brand that many of you may not be familiar with. I see their ads all over the backs of magazines and at airports, but then hey, I live in Zurich, so maybe I am biased.
This watch is inline with the TAG Heuer in that it is also expensive, but a cheaper option than a Rolex. It has enough differences to the Daytona to make it interesting (including this 3 color sub-dial option) but is a very close approximation nonetheless.
10. Hamilton Lord Hamilton (H32816131)
Continuing with the slightly higher-end Swiss Made watches, this Hamilton Lord Hamilton is perhaps the least “homeage” of these 3 Swiss watches, but an option worth checking out nonetheless.
It has the Tachymeter bezel of course and the 3 sub-dial chronograph, however they are aligned vertically so that a day/date window can be placed at 3 o’clock. Not a bad idea in the end.
I love the black/silver style of this watch in every detail, including the sharp hour hands, less prominent pushers and rings on the sub-dials.