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Rafael Nadal and Richard Mille Celebrate 10 Years of Collaboration With a $1 Million Tourbillon

The new watch's structure was inspired by a tennis racquet.

Richard Mille Rafael Nadal tourbillon Courtesy of Richard Mille

After ten years and a signature watch, Richard Mille’s newest tourbillon created in partnership with Rafael Nadal may be the duo’s crowning achievement.

Coming in at only 30 grams, the RM 27-04 is a balanced design that is surprisingly durable. Its suspended tourbillon caliber can resist accelerations of more than 12,000 g’s, a new record for the innovative Swiss firm. The inner workings were inspired by the tensile strength of a tennis racket, and the movement is entirely supported by a micro-blasted mesh––measuring just 855 square millimeters in surface area––comprised of a single braided steel cable just 0.27mm in diameter. The configuration is unprecedented in the world of haute horology and in keeping with the watchmaker’s athletic aesthetic.

“After 10 years of partnership, and having spent time with Richard’s teams, I’m still fascinated by the talent, passion and unrelenting quest for excellence that are the hallmarks of the brand,” said Nadal in a statement. “Only a few people in the world are capable of achieving such a level of technical prowess.”

Richard Mille RM 27-04 Rafael Nadal

The groundbreaking design was, fittingly, inspired by a tennis racket.  Courtesy of Richard Mille

The master craftsmen responsible for constructing the timepiece painstakingly anchored that gossamer cable to a tensioner positioned at 5 o’clock. They then began to form the fine mesh by tying each of the main strings before adding the necessary cross strings, weaving each one above and below the main strings. The hollow bezel is forged from grade five titanium and the single cable passes through it a full 38 times before completing its journey at a tensioner positioned at 10 o’clock. Polished titanium hooks then secure the diagonally placed, skeletonized movement (with 19 jewels and a 38-hour power reserve) to the secure network.

The case itself is likewise unique having both sandblasted and polished elements on its TitaCarb® body, which is exclusive to Richard Mille. This material is a polyamide developed for high performance and reinforced with 38.5 percent carbon fiber content to make it one of the strongest of its kind.

Limited to just 50 pieces, the RM 27-04 is available exclusively at Richard Mille boutiques worldwide for $1,050,000.00.

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