The reason classics are so enduring is that they’re always ripe for reinvention—and the best of them only get better with a little tinkering. Audemars Piguet’s Royal Oak is one such example and its latest surprise revamp is simply golden.
Dropped on the Swiss brand’s website this week, the iconic timepiece––considered one of the finest to emerge in the past few decades––now comes in a limited-edition 18K white gold version. Its silvery body maintains all the signature faceted elements of its predecessor, rendered in precious metal. The 38mm case surrounds the firm’s signature textured Grande Tapisserie dial with a sky blue finish, which is covered by anti-reflective sapphire crystal. This coordinates with tonal blue rings around the seconds track and each subdial for increased readability at a glance. Of course, that legibility is also aided by the luminous hands and hour markers for low-light conditions.
Within lies the in-house, self-winding caliber 2385 movement with a luxe 18K gold oscillating weight in keeping with the exterior. It has a 3Hz frequency and 27 jewels with approximately 40 hours of power reserve. And though you probably wouldn’t go for a dip in it, the watch is water-resistant to an impressive 50 meters.
Part of this reference’s appeal is how it manages to update the design with new materials while not abandoning the silhouette and proportions that have garnered the Royal Oak such a loyal following. Other than the gold case and linked bracelet and pale azure palette of the dial, the watch stays true to the original, ensuring it won’t upset purists while still enticing those looking for something a bit different.
But anyone eyeing this new version will have to move quickly. A true limited edition, its production is limited to a scant 100 examples with each retailing for $59,000. To learn more and reserve your own, head to the brand’s website.