This is not a Baselworld piece (RM presents at SIHH in Geneva), but a nice piece for the ladies that Mille recently unveiled. Limited edition 30 pieces in each of red or white gold. The watch is based on the RM26 tourbillon, first introduced in 2011. I’d love to see one of these in the wild. A real panda, that is.
by Kyle Stults on April 22, 2013
The RM 52-01 Skull is is the second piece in the Skull collection (first piece launched in 2012), and features the skull design that embodies Richard Mille’s anti-conformist spirit. This model stands out both for its choice of materials and the way it has been crafted. The RM 52-01 Skull has a manual winding tourbillon caliber built on a baseplate in PVD-treated titanium, much like the original RM 52. But the skull and back of the skull are now sculpted from 5N red gold and are hand-bevelled — giving the skull a much more distinctive presence.
For the case, Richard Mille introduces a composite nano-ceramic material known as TZP, used for the RM 52-01′s bezel and case back (finished with microblasting and hand-polishing on the corners).
The RM 52-01 is released as a limited edition of 30 timepieces.
Richard Mille has been appointed the Official Timekeeper to the Polo Club Saint-Tropez; a magnificent 30 hectare-green setting nestled between Saint-Tropez and Pampelonne in the South of France. Of course a watch accompanies the announcement. Available from July at Polo Club Saint-Tropez and official Richard Mille Boutiques in Europe and the Middle East (Paris, Geneva, London, Dubai).
RM 011 Polo de Saint-Tropez
Limited Edition 25 pieces
titanium caseband, ceramic bezel and caseback, Polo Club logo engraved on sapphire caseback, on grey rubber strap
The 2013 SPA Classic will be held this year in Belgium at the Spa-Francorchamps, with Richard Mille being the first official timekeeper of the race. This watch is thus most likely for you European and in particular Belgian race fans out there. The watch is a flyback chronograph with countdown, annual calendar and Richard Mille’s variable rotor technology (as I explain here). Its great colors caught my eye. Check out more on the Spa classic car race here.
Richard Mille RM 011 SPA Classic 2013
Limited Edition 50 pieces
SPA Classic Logo on dial
Richard Mille introduces a new RM 011 featuring a bezel and caseback made of brown silicon nitride, a material never before used in watchmaking, according to Mille (and I believe him). Brown silicon nitride is a essentially a ceramic, and an extremely hard one at that. At 1,500 Vickers, — versus 150-190 for 316L steel alloys — the material was heretofore used in bearings, metal-cutting tools, and other high-temperature applications. And now the high-tech, high-performance material can add “high performance wristwatches” to its list of application uses.
Richard Mille RM 011 Brown Silicon Nitride
Silicon nitride is used for the bezel and case back of the RM 011. According to Mille, these parts are machined with diamond (10,000 Vickers) tools that are capable of performing the complex operations required by the barrel shape whilst guaranteeing strict tolerances and an exceptional case finish (satin-brushing and microblasting). The satin-brushed case-middle, crown and push-pieces are made of 18-carat red gold, and the push-piece guards from polished grade 5 titanium.
If you found the green and orange RM 59-01 (aka The Beast) a bit too much on the flashy side, could this new RM011 be your thing? Available at Richard Mille boutiques.
Full listing of 2013 Richard Mille watches, with design and materials innovation on all fronts.
CLICK ANY WATCH FOR PERPETUELLE COMMENTARY, SPECS, AND HIGH-RES IMAGES!
Richard Mille RM 056-1
Richard Mille RM059-01
Richard Mille RM 27-01
by Kyle Stults on January 22, 2013
SIHH 2013…Extreme Transparency…
If you thought that last year’s Richard Mille RM 56 split-seconds competition chronograph sapphire crystal watch was something to behold, well then feast your eyes on this. Though you may be inclined to think that you are imagining this transparent machine, this ghost of a watch as it sits before your very eyes, rest assured that it is very, very real. And very spectacular.
This takes the the RM 056 (a limited edition of 5 timepieces) to a new level of clarity, if you will. The RM 56-01 Sapphire Crystal has not only a sapphire case, but movement bridges and baseplate as well. In advancing last year’s RM 56, the RM 56-01 also draws from Mille’s creation of the RM 018 ‘Homage to Boucheron’, which has a double baseplate in sapphire. Full discussion and high-res closeups of this extreme piece, below.
UPDATE: Link to Live Pics, now below.
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by Kyle Stults on January 22, 2013
Yohan ‘The Beast’ Blake isn’t the only one to get a new Richard Mille this year — multi-year athlete/ambassador and tennis superstar Rafael Nadal also gets a new piece. The new Richard Mille Tourbillon RM 27-01 ‘Rafael Nadal Watch’ — designed in collaboration with Rafael Nadal — follows the original RM 027 from 2010. Not only is the look is vastly different but so is the engineering. Its ultra-light carbon case and complex architecture reflects Mille’s desire to create a movement held in total suspension in its case. Indeed, this is one of the more avant-garde and innovative architectural constructions seen in recent times — I’ll walk you through all the details, below.
Richard Mille Tourbillon RM 27-01 Rafael Nadal Watch
Limited edition 50 pieces
carbon case + Velcro strap (total=19 grams), movement suspended by tensioned cable & pulley architecture
The RM 27-01 has a baseplate attached by four braided steel cables just 0.35mm in diameter. The cables are held taut by an ingenious system of tensioners (located at 3′ and 9′) and pulleys positioned at the four corners of the movement. Each cable is fixed to the tensioner, passes over the upper pulley and into the movement before returning to the lower pulley. Once the cables are threaded, the watchmaker tensions them by rotating a central tensioner ring . All said and done, Mille suggests that this enables the caliber to withstand tensions of 5,000 G.
As one seeks to comprehend this process, I was reminded of the process of stringing a tennis racket and Voila! The Mille genius of building his watches to be sympatico with his athletes is recognized!
This structure combines strength and flexibility to protect the ultra-light movement which clocks in at a mere 3.5 grams. This ultra-light movement is due to the use of titanium baseplate and tourbillon carriage as well as aluminum-lithium for the barrel bridges and gear trains.
The overall watch weights in at a mere 19 grams — Velcro strap included. The original RM 27 was 21 grams, sans strap, I believe). Velcro — as we first saw on the 2012 Olympics and Yohan Blake’s watch — seems an appropriate material for a watch such as this.
Word is that Rafa is now playing all his tournaments in the RM27-01!
SIHH 2013..mark of The Beast…
As has become the norm, ultra-exclusive watchmaker Richard Mille again goes over-the-top with his 2013 pieces. The words “innovate” and “push the boundaries” mean far more to this man than any other watchmaker I know. Starting here with the wild RM 59-01 ‘Yohan Blake’ edition. You all know Yohan Blake, right? He is the young Jamaican sprinter, known as “The Beast”. He currently runs second behind fellow countryman and super star Usain Bolt, but rarely anyone else. Blake signed with Mille at the time of the 2013 Olympics and soon found himself at the center of a sponsorship controversy as he was quietly wearing a not-so-quiet (bright yellow and green) Richard Mille on his wrist during Olympic competition. But in the end all ended well for young Yohan, and now he has a new piece to his name, the RM 59-01 tourbillon. A limited edition of 50 pieces, of which one will sell for a cool $620,000. This watch does not fail to catch the eye, and of course it will run like the wind. Lots of high-res, and det’s, on the jump.
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by Kyle Stults on December 10, 2012
This is a stereotypical Richard Mille watch with all the usual high-tech construction and materials, though with an unlikely partner (Jean Todt, anyone?) and an unusual complication. Dare I say that the only thing noteworthy on this piece (15 will be made) is that it contains a mechanical G-force sensor, and profits will go to charity. The complication, like all others from Richard Mille, is made by Renaud Papi. It displays on a graduated scale (red/yellow/green) the number of G’s accumulated by the wearer during a rapid deceleration. And impressive mechanical build yes, but even as far as Richard Mille’s complications go, this one seems a bit far fetched. Presumably if you are in the red G-force zone, checking your watch will be the last thing on your mind. So to this piece I say, “Duh.”
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