Never think that Richard Mille won’t find that “next level” to take it to — because as you can see here, he inevitably always does. The direct origins of the watch you see here can be traced back just a couple years to the Richard Mille RM 56 Sapphire, a tourbillon split-second chrono built with a full-on sapphire crystal case. It was an equally outrageous and glorious object when it stepped onto the world watch stage — and there were plenty of deep pockets who lined up to own one of the million-and-a-half dollar watch of which only 5 were being created. Richard Mille, ever ambititious, followed up with the RM56-01 in 2013 which had had a sapphire case, and as well as the movement bridges & baseplate. And a tourbillon. Yea, why not.
And today? Well, I just wanted to remind you that the the RM 56-02 was officially unveiled this week at Watches & Wonders Hong Kong. I previewed the RM 56-02 back in July and if you aren’t familiar with the details you can click here to check it out and see more images>>>
Sapphire case & bridges…cable-suspended caliber…
Here’s your first look at the new sapphire tourbillon watch that Richard Mille at the Watches & Wonders in Hong Kong later this year (30 September to 2 October 2014). The RM56-02 is the third — and best yet — iteration of Mille’s innovative and incredible RM 56 sapphire series. Not only is the watch made of a case entirely made of sapphire (which takes ~40 days non-stop to machine), but it has a cable-suspended movement that appears almost as if floating in the case. A technical and visual marvel, the RM 56-02 will be limited to just 10 pieces worldwide, with each carrying a price tag of just over $2 million.
The Richard Mille RM 61-01 is the latest iteration of the watch originally inspired by and designed for Jamaican sprinter Yohan Blake. The 61-01 aka “Baby Blake” is less exotic than the RM 59-01, which featured a tourbillon, four “claws” inside the dial, and a carbon nanotube composite case — all features which are not present in the 61-01. Of course, the “original” Yohan Blake was a variant of the RM38 which Blake wore during the 2012 Olympics (and not without controversy, I might add), and which was eventually sold by Antiquorum as part of Only Watch 2013.
Last weekend I spent some time with the good folks at Richard Mille, during which time I made sure to get a closeup look at the new RM35-01 “Rafa” (Rafael Nadal) watch. The RM 35-01 is nothing short of amazing. The most impressive thing about this watch, hands-on: it’s weight. Or lack thereof, more appropriately. The highly skeletonized, high-tech movement weighs a mere 4 grams. Add that to an ultra-light NTPT carbon case and I’m still approximate this watch as weighing the equivalent of a small pile of paper clips. Even with the velcro fabric strap. Seriously! An impressive achievement, there is no doubt.