Even though Richard Mille’s 2016 lineup thus far is quite a bit tamer than what we’ve seen in prior years, this piece done in collaboration with Airbus Corporate Jets (“ACJ”) certainly didn’t hold back. Though I’m not sure that’s a good thing. Price on this watch is a cool $1,050,000. Really? Yea, it’s an interesting watch, but c’mon, this feels like excess purely for the sake of it.
Richard Mille ACJ RM 50-02 Tourbillon Split Seconds Chronograph
Limited edition 30 pieces
titanium case with ceramic bezel
does this look like watch you can read ‘at a glance’ ?
Airbus is a name that requires no introduction as a world leader in the aviation industry, and as a collaboration with ACJ it was only natural that Richard Mille would incorporate various Airbus design elements into the watch. The very distinctive case shape in Titanium-Aluminum alloy (TiAl) with a secondary ceramic bezel was developed to mirror the outlines of an ACJ’s typical window shape. This Titanium-Aluminum is the same alloy as that used in the Airbus for its jet turbine blades, though it’s a safe bet that the RM 50-02 will not be subjected to anything close to the demanding working environment of a jet turbine blade. Other subtle details include the use of Torq set screws in place of the traditional Richard Mille style, and a jet engine inspired crown bearing an engraved, wave patterned Airbus logo.
Mechanics and finishing-wise, this is obviously a very complicated watch, with tourbillon and split seconds chronograph, open worked design elements in the internal design of bridges and baseplate in grade 5 titanium, along with an extensive application of skeletonization to every possible area, offering significant weight reduction (and aesthetic enhancement). Furthermore, a number of parts within the movement have been coated with a distinctive, special aeronautical coating normally used to protect engine and chassis parts from corrosion and environmental conditions.
The new RM 50-02 tourbillon calibre also hosts a power reserve indicator (70 hours) between 11 and 12 o’clock, a torque indicator that supplies information about the tension of the mainspring, and a function indicator to show the watch’s state in each of the positions for winding, neutral and hand setting.
I think I’d like something a bit more practical.