Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Watch

In April 1972, Audemars Piguet shocked the luxury watch globe with an innovative, distinctive and dramatic watch. Attendees at the Watch Show (currently called BaselWorld) were intrigued by AP’s new generation — the watch we know today as the Royal Oak.

The Royal Oak, with its stainless steel construction and eight vulnerable hexagonal bezel screws, turned into the area of luxury watch style upside down. Its bracelet has been integrated, and practical parts of the opinion were visible for the whole world to view.

Even cooler compared to the layout — that the masterwork of watch designer Gérald Genta — has been the Royal Oak’s cost. At 3,300 Swiss francs, its price was upwards of 10 times that of the Rolex Submariner and more akin to golden dress Audemars Piguet watches compared to stainless steel sports models.

Audemars Piguet watches

With the Royal Oak, AP made a gamble: it wager that a distinctive, bold layout unlike anything else in the marketplace could stand out and become an icon.

Like most unique products, the Royal Oak attracted both praise and criticism when it was first released. Its unusual design was written off as an attention-seeking gimmick. However, the Royal Oak has just gotten better with time. As months and years went on, see fans warmed to its disruptive layout, realizing what a bold and innovative view it was. Interestingly, it wasn’t only the plan of this Royal Oak which has been a bet for AP. In 1971, only 1 year before the watch has been published, the company found itself in the middle of a significant crisis that could have resulted in bankruptcy.

Throughout the 1970s, Japanese watchmakers shook the Korean luxury watchmaking industry. Many Swiss watchmakers went bankrupt. Many in the industry anticipated that AP would grow into one of these. By 1970, one year before the Royal Oak’s launching, to 1988, Swiss watchmakers laid off more than 62,000 workers — two-thirds of the nation’s watchmaking workforce.

By 1978, Hong Kong had been the world’s biggest watch exporter. Five decades later, the Swiss watch industry had declined from 1,600 watchmakers to just 600. The business was in crisis, and also the Royal Oak has been regarded as a risky wager from AP at exactly the wrong time. Paradoxically, it was AP’s risky bet that ended up saving the company. The Royal Oak has been a major victory, and its own unique design and higher price tag made it precisely what the foreign competitors could not offer: a distinctly Swiss luxury watch that was about design rather than function.

Since 1972, the Royal Oak has become AP’s most famous view, and by many criteria the organization’s signature design. AP’s 1971 gamble not only paid off — it assisted the business thrive as most of its rivals failed.

In April 1972, Audemars Piguet shocked the luxury watch globe using an innovative, unique and striking watch. Attendees in the Watch Show (currently called BaselWorld) were fascinated by AP’s new creation — the watch we all know today as the Royal Oak.

The Royal Oak, with its stainless steel construction and eight vulnerable hexagonal bezel screws, turned the world of luxury watch style upside down. Its bracelet was integrated, and practical components of the opinion were visible for the entire world to see.

Even cooler compared to the layout — the masterwork of watch designer Gérald Genta — was the Royal Oak’s cost. At 3,300 Swiss francs, its cost was upwards of 10 times that of the Rolex Submariner and more comparable to gold dress watches compared to stainless steel sports versions.

Together with the Royal Oak, AP made a bet: it bet a unique, bold layout unlike anything else on the market could stand out and become a star.

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak

Like most exceptional products, the Royal Oak attracted both praise and criticism after it was initially introduced. Its unusual layout was written off as an attention-seeking gimmick. But the Royal Oak has only gotten better with time. As months and years went on, watch fans warmed to its tumultuous layout, knowing exactly what a bold and innovative watch it had been. Interestingly, it was not only the plan of the Royal Oak which was a gamble for AP. In 1971, only 1 year before the opinion was released, the company found itself in the midst of a major catastrophe that could have resulted in bankruptcy.

Throughout the 1970s, Japanese watchmakers shook the Korean luxury watchmaking business. The Swiss sector, which specialized in mechanical watches, found itself fending off competition from abroad which offered much less expensive quartz watches. Many in the industry anticipated that AP would become one of these. From 1970, one year prior to the Royal Oak’s launch, to 1988, Swiss watchmakers laid off more than 62,000 workers — two-thirds of the nation’s watchmaking workforce.

From 1978, Hong Kong had been the world’s largest watch exporter. Five years after, the Swiss watch industry had declined from 1,600 watchmakers to just 600. The industry was in crisis, and the Royal Oak has been regarded as a risky bet from AP in precisely the wrong time. Ironically, it had been AP’s risky wager that ended up saving the firm. The Royal Oak was a major victory, and its own unique design and high price tag made it exactly what the overseas competitors could not provide: a clearly Swiss luxury watch which was all about layout instead of function.

Since 1972, the Royal Oak has grown into AP’s most famed watch, and by most criteria the organization’s signature style. AP’s 1971 gamble not only paid off — it helped the business thrive as many of its rivals failed.

 Royal Oak watches

Royal Oak 15300
The 15300 uses an in-house self-winding calibre 3120 movement with a 60-hour power reserve and date caution.

Iconic among watch enthusiasts, the 15300 is larger than the first”Jumbo” Royal Oak from 1972, with the same case diameter however a bigger 9.4mm thickness. Additionally, it includes a crystal clear case back, letting you catch a glimpse of the calibre 3120 movement if it is your wrist off.

In 1993, AP published the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore collection — a larger, weightier Royal Oak aimed at adventurers. The Royal Oak Offshore featured a bigger 42mm case, which impressed watch fans since it came onto the market.

The Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph 26470ST combines the larger dimensions of the Offshore with a slate gray”Méga Tapisserie” dial, a tiny seconds subdial, and a chronograph. Using its hands-stitched alligator strap, the 26470ST is as charismatic as luxury watches come.

The Royal Oak Chronograph 26320ST pairs AP’s iconic design with an elegant silver-toned”Grande Tapisserie” pattern dial and white gold hour markers. The end result is an automatic chronograph that’s sporty but dressy, and contemporary but undeniably timeless.

The calibre 2385, which has a 40-hour power reserve and 37 stones, also provides the 26320ST a helpful date complication.

In an industry famous for its conservative approach to design, Audemars Piguet took a big threat when it published the Royal Oak at 1972. To say the threat has”paid off” for AP would be a major understatement — that the Royal Oak has grown to become one of those 21st century’s most iconic watches.

In the standard-sized Royal Oak into the bigger, rugged Royal Oak Offshore, the Royal Oak range has become one of AP’s signature offerings — a collection of watches offering a mixture of amazing design, outstanding attention to detail and the world’s finest materials.