Audemars Piguet has stayed at the top of the haute horology game by honoring its heritage while keeping one eye on future innovation. Its two latest launches are updates on a pair of its most celebrated styles advanced through the brand’s newest technological developments.
First up is a twist on what is easily the Swiss watchmaker’s most famous model, the Royal Oak. This marks the first time it has ever been produced as a self-winding flying tourbillon, an achievement the brand has rendered in three case materials: stainless steel, titanium and 18-carat pink gold. The stainless steel and pink gold version share sunburst dial motifs evolved from the flying tourbillon cage at 6 o’clock, while the titanium model has a sandblasted grey face.
Powered by a Calibre 2950 movement, the trio represents the manufacturer’s latest generation of self-winding movement combining a flying tourbillon with a central rotor. The hand-finished flying tourbillon cage provides a view of some of the watch’s regulating components and the sheer case back offers an alternative glimpse of its refined inner workings.
The 41mm style is water-resistant to 50 meters. The Royal Oak is noted for its integrated bracelet which closes with a triple-blade folding clasp.
Next is a fresh take on the Code 11.59 Selfwinding Flying Tourbillon. Available in two variants, its gold dial in covered in a fine blend of crushed aventurine glass and “Grand Feu” enamel that combine to evoke a star-lit sky. A very thin layer of glass sand mixed with water is applied by hand on the crushed aventurine glass before being heated at more than 800°C in a special oven. That process is repeated multiple times to achieve maximum transparency, depth and light reflection.
One iteration of the new Code 11.59 has a black dial with hand-finished 18-carat pink gold hour-markers, Arabic numerals and hands which are illuminated by a 41mm 18-carat pink gold case. Its twin has a blue aventurine enamel dial with a case, hour markers, Arabic numerals and hands in 18-carat white gold, entirely hand-finished throughout. Both share a bold flying tourbillon cage at 6 o’clock and a clear case back which reveals an oscillating weight in 22-carat pink gold.
Each of them operates on a Selfwinding Manufacture caliber 2950 movement with 27 jewels and a minimum of 65 hours of power reserve. Water-resistant to 30 meters, both secure around the wrist via a hand-stitched black alligator strap that closes using a solid gold folding clasp.
The Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet Selfwinding Flying Tourbillon and Royal Oak Selfwinding Flying Tourbillon are available now. Price upon request.
From Robb Report USA