Audemars Piguet and Royal Oak; it is not easy to find another duo that is often co-authored. Although there are other iconic models from different brands, the Royal Oak model family, particularly Jumbo, has a place of its own.
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak, first launched in 1972 and introduced as the luxury-stainless steel watch, was designed to be quite large in terms of that era. The first version, which deserved the nickname Jumbo with a case diameter of 39mm, became an instant top-seller and a legend afterwards.
When we look at the point reached in the past 47 years, we do not see many changes except minor upgrades. After all, why would you mess with perfection anyway? In 2012, Jumbo, had its last revision exclusive to its 40th year and took its final shape, which was modern yet faithful to the original. From this date, the Royal Oak Jumbo model family, which is produced in five 18K gold versions (three yellow gold, one pink gold and one white gold with diamonds) and one titanium-platinum version, is expanded with an 18K white gold case/pink gold dial version that was introduced at the SIHH exhibition this year.
Just like the other members of the family, the newly introduced model comes with a 39mm x 8mm case and an integrated metal bracelet. Audemars Piguet is one of the most spectacular metalworking brands in the luxury watchmaking industry. Especially under different angles of light, the case and bracelet offers various play of light, which provides a unique look. Due to the 18K white gold case and bracelet, we have a heavier watch here when compared to the stainless steel version. However, the extra weight does not cause any discomfort on the contrary it increases the quality feel. The front and rear surfaces of the watch are covered with sapphire crystals and the model’s waterproofing rating is limited to 50 meters. I find this value to be sufficient, as I assume you will not enter the sea or pool when you have such an artwork on your wrist. The most striking detail on the model is on the dial. Decorated in classic Petite-Tapisserie style with hours of work via pantograph, the dial is finished in pink gold tone. I would like to add that the indexes and the hands on the dial are manufactured from white gold like the screws on the bezel. The model, which is completed with superiorly crafted bracelet and double-sided folding clasp, offers top-level quality and comfort.
If you ask me the reasons behind the Royal Oak Jumbo being a watchmaking legend, I would say the movement is definitely in the top three. The movement, designed by Jaeger-LeCoultre and used in Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Jumbo, Patek Philippe Nautilus and Vacheron Constantin Overseas, is now only available under the roof of AP. 36 jewels/247 parts self-winding Caliber 2121, which was the thinnest full size rotor movement for a very long time, beats at an unusual frequency of 2.75Hz and offers a power reserve of 40 hours when fully wound. The solid gold oscillating rotor is directly integrated to the winding system in order to keep the total thickness minimum. By the way, that solid gold oscillating rotor can be custom decorated upon customer’s request. With a certain premium paid over the CHF 55.000 list price.