At this year’s SIHH, Audemars Piguet released a wide variety of novelties. From haute horology minute repeaters (i.e. Grand Sonnerie), double balance wheel Royal Oaks, the return of yellow gold, and, of course, some awesome fashion-forward multi-colored divers. This year’s novelties definitely got my heart beating. Honestly, as a collector of AP, I was very surprised by the diver move. In the last few years, AP has been moving away from limited editions (particularly within the Offshore range) and has instead focused their efforts on building on their heritage (Royal Oak line, Grand Comps, and Ladies’ pieces). You can imagine my delight when I saw a new sporty diver line in multiple colors (Green, Orange, Yellow, and Blue). It was a surprising and innovative move for a very calculated and traditional Swiss brand.
Ever since SIHH ended, I’ve been day dreaming about this watch. So I wanted to take some time to explain my current horological crush, the new Audemars Piguet Offshore Diver Chrono in yellow.
Like many of you, I pair my watches with my clothing. Since I wear mostly blue and black, the yellow color contrasts well with most of the items in my closet. Furthermore, this piece would look excellent with a t-shirt and blue jeans. The piece sits nicely on the wrist and is a perfect sporty watch for casual Fridays at the office or a quick jaunt to the Caribbean. I’m having visions of wearing it on a beach in Jamaica while sipping a Singapore sling.
The new line, while surprising, does build on the heritage of AP’s Offshore diver collection. Historically, AP has made dressy watches that run the gamut from two-handed dress watches to grand complications. When they introduced the Off-Shore collection in the 90s, many were surprised that they were going after heavy-duty sports watch category. Sure, the original Royal Oak was one of the world’s first true luxury stainless steel sports watches, but the Off-Shore took their offerings to another level.
The stainless steel Offshore case measures 42 mm x 14.20 mm and is water-resistant to 100 meters. Inside is caliber 3126/3840, which beats at 3Hz, with a total of 365 parts (59 jewels), and a power reserve of 55-hours.
The blue, orange, and yellow models will be available this spring in most authorized AP dealers and AP boutiques. The green model is a Geneva only edition. The price is $27,900.
To me, it feels like a blend of the Scuba models of a decade ago and their current Diver line. Add a Chrono, and you have a great all-around sports/dive watch. Plus, with the addition of some cool funky colors, this line of watches should sell like hotcakes.