Audemars Piguet has just released yet another masterpiece in their Royal Oak Offshore collection – the Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph. If this watch doesn’t have the makings of a grail watch for the countless AP admirers out there, I’d be most surprised.
The Royal Oak Offshore is the oversized version to the Royal Oak and since 2008 has really been on the move employing complications that one would not necessarily expect on a sports watch. It is funny to me how the roles have evolved.
In 1972, when AP released the Royal Oak as the first ever luxury sports watch in steel it was a veritable game changer, now in today’s market place it seems that the Royal Oak has become the dress watch and the Offshore has become the rugged sports watch, but as AP continues to meld sporty aesthetics and high end complications, I wonder what the brand’s next move will be for a true sports watch with sport based complications. I do, however, think it is great that AP is willing to push the envelope and create watches that show off the brand’s watchmaking muscle in each of their collections.
Audemars Piguet makes this watch with a case size of 44mm and is 16.6mm thick, which is the larger size in the Offshore collection. From all reports, this timepiece has an amazing wrist presence. The Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph comes in either 18kt rose gold or 950 platinum. The bezel is made from forged carbon and of course is octagonal with 8 screws. The screw locked main crown and chronograph pushers are made from shiny black ceramic, which contrast against the satin finished case material. Just above each of the chamfered lugs, AP hollows out the case which serves to frame the gorgeous dial.
The dial features the tourbillon aperture at 9 and a 30 minute chronograph subdial at 3. At 12 and 6 are two apertures, revealing portions of the manual wound movement. The chronograph employs a column wheel, which ensures a smooth start when timing events. Chronographs without column wheels can sometimes be jumpy when activated and therefore are not as accurate as should be. On the steep vaulted flange is a tachometric scale used to indicate average speed.
This model is driven by the in house made movement caliber 2912, which is made using 328 parts. The hand wound movement is fitted with an amazing 237 hours of power reserve – that’s almost 10 days (well played AP). Water resistance stands at 100 meters, which is pretty good. The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Tourbillon Chronograph is fitted with a black alligator strap for the pink gold model and a blue alligator strap for the 950 platinum model.