The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Concept GMT Tourbillon
First Horbiter®'s article from the SIHH 2014, our first at the SIHH in Geneva, could we start a better way? Our “30 minutes on the wrist” column has turned white today, the white of the ceramic bezel of what's next in the Royal Oak's lifecycle, what we might maybe highlight as the ultimate Royal Oak, covered live at the Audemars Piguet's booth, the Royal Oak Concept GMT Tourbillon:
How could we not mention the ceramic bridge placed on the dial, in between the tourbillon mechanism placed at 9 and the 2nd timezone placed at 3. This is the fourth Royal Oak Concept model in the pipeline, soon after the last one unveiled in 2011, and last in a range that shocked the watchmaking world back in 2002. This year's Royal Oak Concept GMT Tourbillon blends successfully ceramics with titanium, showcasing a step further: ceramics is being used for the realisation of part of the 2930 calibre.
No other maison but Audemars Piguet, which has been consistently investing in innovation over the last years and has been among the first in the world to adopt ceramics and to blend it with other materials, could do it, teaching how to master different materials and bond them. Because that bezel and such pushpieces are not raw ceramics, which is as we all know very hard to be worked out, but have undergone special machinery to get that stunning.
If you think that is all about materials, you are completely out because the Royal Oak Concept GMT Tourbillon movement fully stands out, as the new hand wind calibre 2930 has a double barrel which ensures an astounding 10 days of power reserve, while being easy to use since the GMT function can be instantly adjusted by pushing a button placed at 4. Last not least at 6 you may find a function selector (3 positions H-N-R) that changes according to the winding stem position.
In such superlatives, guess what do i like most? Apologies for taking it too easy, but it is the case design as it tells of a renovated styling course, which provides a Royal Oak that develops along the vertical axis. My question is: “When are we going to see a normal production Royal Oak Concept?”
(Photo credit: Horbiter®'s proprietary photo shooting)
Gaetano C. @Horbiter®