The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore
Today we get right to the Olympus of watchmaking , where we meet story-legend-technology-manufacture. Audemars Piguet is history because, born in 1875, is, by right, part of the history of watchmaking of the highest workmanship:
Audemars Piguet is legend because, though it has among its creations, virtually every type of timepiece (complicated - classic - ultraplate - avantgarde) invented the "sporty" watch, probably the most recognizable in the world:
Audemars Piguet is technology because first, it has heavily invested in new materials and alloys such as Cermet and Forged carbon. Audemars Piguet is a manufacture because its movements are designed and manufactured in-house:
Finally, I add, since 1875 it is still owned by the founders through generations, a connoisseur understands what I mean. I think very a few know how to condense into a single watch all these values and even fewer can boast in their collection a watch on the structure of the Royal Oak. Born in the 70s by the express will of the Italian market and the pencil of this genius, whose name is indelibly written in the history of watchmaking, Gèrald Gènta:
and, as stated in the claim of Audemars Piguet: "From Avantgarde to Icon". At the forefront when it was launched, a genuine bet, its success has probably at that time "shocked" the same Audemars Piguet. Then as now: octagonal bezel, screw tip tangent to a circle concentric to the ideal dial to set the bezel on the case (and on the back to fix the case back), stainless steel bracelet, "mega tapisserie" dial. Today, like yesterday. It is recognizable as it is at first sight a 991 without the badge on the hood. Then the extension of the range, to meet the needs of a changing market, looking for variations and here's the Royal Oak Chrono version to give that touch of sportiness, with skilful and light hand, to a masterpiece:
Finally, the Royal Oak Offshore Chrono version of this article, the most sporty one, 44mm wide, automatic movement, 55 hours of power reserve, bezel, pushers and crown made out of ceramic, tachymeter scale, transparent caseback, variable inertia and bidirectional rotor, balance wheel oscillating at 3Hz:
The rubber strap with the two slots that end on the case through the two vertical mesh steel bracelet to remember the Royal Oak, and the generous tang buckle with the AP logo. An elaborated design but never heavy, thanks to the clever work of artistic director Octavio Garcia, who was able to give, since his arrival, expressive coherence to the entire range, from the most classic to the more sporty one. Unsurpassed? I would not say, there is a watch that attracts me even more: it is dedicated to a 7 times F1 world champion and it is an Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore!
(photo credit: Google - Antiquorum; Royal Oak Offshore shooting: Trucchi Orologeria)
Gaetano C. @Horbiter®
You may also be interested in...