I bought a gold and stainless Datejust in Paris in 1983. All of the middle links were gold, except the two that joined the band to the watch, which were stainless. When I asked the AD why that was, he told me that, while DJs sold in other countries were made of 14kt, the ones sold in France were required (by law!) to be 18kt. So that the French Rolex dealers would not be at a price disadvantage to their competitors in other countries, they saved money by using two stainless links.
I have no idea whether this was true, but I thought it looked odd. So, about a year later, I ordered two 18kt links and had the two stainless ones replaced. I don't remember the exact figures after these many years, but I do recall that the cost of the two links was about 1/4 the price of the watch!
Sorry, never heard of that, nor have I seen it in any Rolex reference books. I've also never seen a tutone Rolex from the late 70s or 80s that had 2 links in steel rather than gold. In addition, I'm not sure how making 2 links in steel would be much savings. The gold links on all tutone watches in the 1980s were hollow, so there really wasn't that much gold being used for 2 links.
Back in the early 1980s, a tutone Sub or GMT was about $2500 and in steel about $1,350. That was before a discount and back then you could get discounts of 25% on all steel watches. Tutones you could easily get for about 30% off, even in the early 1990s.
Your story is entertaining, but I'm just not sure how true or accurate it really is. Still entertaining.