As it stands today, the Rolex Explorer II 1655 is somewhat of an oddball in Rolex’s history. It was made explicitly for cave explorers, yet promoted by actors and professional athletes. Its sales were disappointing while in production; however it is now one of the more desirable and rare vintage Rolex references.
(The Rolex Explorer II, nicknamed by collectors as the Steve McQueen or ‘Freccione’ by some Italian collectors because of the bright orange arrow-shaped 24-hour hand on the watch —the word ‘Freccione’ comes from the Italian word ‘Freccia’ which means “arrow”— was only produced by Rolex from 1971 through 1984. At the time of its launch, the watch was intended to be a ‘tool’ watch for cave explorers that after spending days in a cavern, couldn’t tell if it was day or night outside. A problem that was easily solved by the 24-hour orange arrow-shaped hand that along with the 24-hour military time bezel, would help them identify day or night times with ease. (This one was produced in 1982))