Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph 25th Anniversary Watches

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph 25th Anniversary Watches

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph 25th Anniversary Watches Watch Releases

The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph 25th Anniversary and Royal Oak Offshore Selfwinding Chronograph are three new, pre-SIHH 2018 references that we'll see in stores next year, when AP is celebrating the 25th anniversary of its Royal Oak Offshore line.

When Audemars Piguet unveiled the first Royal Oak Offshore some 25 years ago, I don’t think they expected it to be the success that it is today, even though it largely built on the original Royal Oak recipe: go very large, very bold, and expensive. Many forget that at the time of its debut in 1972, the now-classical 39mm Royal Oak caused quite a stir with its price, its on-display screw heads in its bezel, its steel case and bracelet, and its extremely high price, unprecedented for a steel watch. Now, all this was to be taken to the next level with the Royal Oak Offshore.

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph 25th Anniversary Watches Watch Releases
The first Royal Oak Offshore reference 25721ST.OO.1000ST.01. Source: watchuwant.com

It was large and brash, and purists who saw it at Basel back in 1993 screamed that the Royal Oak had been desecrated – probably the same people who cried out to about the original Royal Oak desecrating luxury watches in general. Truth be told, the Offshore was a bold move by Audemars Piguet, but now we all know how well it has paid off. Today, the Royal Oak and Royal Oak Offshore are Audemars Piguet’s best-selling collections – basically synonymous with the brand itself, which clearly isn't a good thing, but we'll leave that discussion for another time.

As 2018 will mark the 25th anniversary of the Royal Oak Offshore, Audemars Piguet will commemorate the occasion with three special Royal Oak Offshore offerings – with certainly a few more in the pipeline, waiting to be launched at SIHH 2018. Here’s your first look at the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph 25th Anniversary and the Royal Oak Offshore Selfwinding Chronograph.

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph 25th Anniversary Watches Watch Releases

The first watch is a re-edition of the very first Royal Oak Offshore Selfwinding Chronograph from 1993. Yup, “The Beast” is back, and this re-edition Ref. 26237ST stays very much faithful to the original. It features a 42mm stainless steel case and bracelet and a blue “Petite Tapisserie” dial. Like the original, the re-edition also has blue rubber pushers for the chronograph and a screw-down crown. Unlike newer Royal Oak Offshore Selfwinding Chronographs that have sapphire display casebacks, the re-edition features a solid caseback engraved with the Royal Oak Offshore logo. Water-resistance is 100m. The main differences that we can see between this 2018 version and the original are extremely subtle, namely in the seconds track and 'Swiss Made' print on the periphery of the dial.

Inside the re-edition Royal Oak Offshore Selfwinding Chronograph beats the Caliber 3126/3840, the same movement used in other modern Royal Oak Offshore chronograph watches. Aside from the time, of course, this movement features chronograph and date complications, a 22k gold rotor, beats at 3Hz, and has a power reserve of 50 hours.

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph 25th Anniversary Watches Watch Releases

Fortunately, it isn't all teary-eyed past-reviving that's happening at this anniversary – kudos to AP for that. Therefore, alongside the re-edition Royal Oak Offshore Selfwinding Chronograph, we see the launch of the new Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph, namely Ref. 26421ST and 26421OR, that have a completely new design in two different case materials.

Based on two earlier Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph watches, specifically the Ref. 26388PO (see our hands-on with it here) and 26288OR, these new Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph watches come in stainless steel and 18k rose gold respectively, and feature a new case design that has a thinner bezel and hence a more open dial. Even so, the distinctive Royal Oak Offshore design traits are all intact. The 45mm case is still angular, the bezel is still octagonal, and there’s no missing those exposed hexagonal screws on the bezel. Completing the look are black ceramic pushers for the chronograph and a screw-down crown. Water resistance is also 100m.

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph 25th Anniversary Watches Watch Releases

On the dial, one can see the exposed movement and the tourbillon at 9 o’clock. Opposite the tourbillon at 3 o’clock is the 30-minute counter for the chronograph. Also clearly visible are the two mainspring barrels. The skeletonized bridges extend from each of the eight screws in a way that is rather unique and ties the design of the case, dial, and movement together in a way few watches manage to do so.

These watches are powered by the in-house hand-wound Caliber 2947, which is an open-worked version of the Caliber 2933 found in the Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph Ref. 26388PO & 26288OR. This particular movement features 338 components, an integrated chronograph movement that has a column wheel mechanism, a beat rate of 3Hz, and a power reserve of a whopping 237 hours. Royal Oak Offshore fanatics are certainly eager to know the prices, and we will update the article when we are able to confirm. Each Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph 25th Anniversary model is limited to 50 pieces. audemarspiguet.com

What do you think?
  • Thumbs up (19)
  • I love it! (14)
  • Interesting (8)
  • I want it! (4)
  • Classy (3)
  • Berndt Norten

    Where’s the confounded bridge?

    What a royal mess.

    AP, I ain’t gonna go your way

    • egznyc

      You can go your own way,
      Go your own way
      You can call it
      Another lousy watch
      Go your own way.

  • SuperStrapper

    Nice renders. Let’s reconvene when there’s a watch to discuss.

  • Sheez Gagoo

    Looks more Chinese than a picture of Mao on the wall.

  • Swipster

    This is getting ridiculous… The only Royal Oak I’d ever buy is the 41mm selfwinding with the blue/white dial, okay I kinda dig the Frosted Gold version as well.
    Most of the other Royal Oaks are over the top tacky and just TERRIBAD… Then again, tastes are subjective.

  • IG

    Without Royal Oak Offshore there’s no Big Bang. AP spawned THE BIVER.

  • Ian john horwood

    For the mentally unstable psycho’s out there.

  • Titus

    I like it a lot. Especially the idea of enlarging the sapphire to engulf the screwheads. Not a fan of the chrongraph pushers though.

  • PollyO

    Do the caseback’s come with the Autobot or Decepticon logo?

  • Mikita

    Hublot Bingo Bango and Invicta are put to shame. They tried so hard to produce a total mess, but AP managed to outrender both. I wonder what is that pizza slicer at 6 o’clock about?

  • Luciano

    Good that they are expensive, so we won’t be constantly reminded about how messy these are.

  • Terance Hill

    If I bought this watch I would get tired of asking everybody else what time it is
    BUT JUST LOOK AT MY EXPENSIVE WATCH !

  • Raymond Wilkie

    What can i say about this piece that i haven’t already said about AP. I guess i just have to accept that pieces like this are bought by the well heeled as a status symbol. My horology hat loves it and wants to see it working, whirling around doing it’s stuff. Practically ……mumble mumble,…legibility, mumble mumble………too busy………mumble mumble, door stop.
    If you need to know the price, you can’t afford it.

    • egznyc

      Nothing at all inappropriate. But as for the watch, at least the screws are all perfectly aligned ;-).

      • Raymond Wilkie

        Fake screws !

  • Marius

    This Audmars Piguet is surpassed by one watch, and one watch only — the Undone Mystique. The Undone Mystique is such an extraordinary watch that its owners pray to our God and Saviour each and every day, thanking him for giving us this watch.

    Undone Mystique. Your don’t wear this watch! You pray to it!
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/41445e638a366cba33155828fbc7a26d7cdeb2b3f75037069880d24bfb95b1b0.jpg

    • egznyc

      That’s funny ;-). I actually like the look off the Mystique although it’s not entirely practical to have unmarked subdials IMO. Might’ve been better as a three-hander.

      • spiceballs

        – – – “look off”- – – Freudian typo?

        • egznyc

          No – just a typo ;-). But what is the meaning of “look off”? Surely not the same as “whack off”? There’s an activity where taking one’s “watch off” is generally unnecessary.

          • spiceballs

            I was thinking ‘look away’.

          • egznyc

            Naturally – that’s exactly what I thought you had in mind, too. 😉

    • David Bredan

      Oh, but we all know, nothing comes close to the Vacheron Constantin Patrimony Traditionelle Chrono, the absolute pinnacle in painstakingly refined watch taste! No watch will get a penny from me unless it has Traditional in French in its name. Preferably accompanied by Patrimony.

      • egznyc

        I suppose Patrimony sounds better to some ears than Heritage. Some ears also might find the term a little Patronizing. Then again, VC’s Les Cabonitiers Symphonia Grande Sonnerie might be what’s best for anyone’s ears. 😉

  • IanE

    AP used to be so much better than this constant churning out of awful variants of the ROO – itself an awful variant of the original Genta design. Surely it is time to move on!?

  • Yan Fin

    Another skeleton in the same closet… Not even 10 day power reserve.

  • Richard Baptist

    I like the reissue, the skeletonized tourbillons are awful. I try not to be negative but these seem to be quite messy and impossible to actually tell the time.

  • cluedog12

    The AP Offshore skeletons I’ve seen in boutiques have left me less than impressed. This one looks to be a big step up, but renderings are renderings.

  • SuperStrapper

    Back for another look, this is actually fairly unique layout. I’m trying to think of another 3 handed watch with dial visible tourbillion where the seconds indication is centre.
    Excluding centrally mounted tourbillion.
    Gronefeld parallax cones to mind but its actually the opposite: centre seconds with eccentric tourbillon, and eccentric time telling in a sub dial.
    A tourbillon chronograph has the look, but unless you leave the chrono running you don’t get the function.

  • egznyc

    What’s up with the subdial arrangement? It looks like a 7750 (though presumably it isn’t). And this version is better than the skeletonized version, which looks more like an ode to a BMX wheel than a dial.

  • Larry Holmack

    This looks like a rendering of medieval torture devices depicted on a watch!! I don’t know what the heck it’s supposed to be!!!

  • Mark1884

    Can I get this in the Gullfire edition??

  • BNABOD

    Just plain ugly. There really is no limit to the amount of watches that fit in my ugly bucket these days. Every day I can just add one more to the list. Good news is that means I buy less watches

  • Jon Snow

    So is ABTW not on Watchville any more? Your choice or theirs?

    • David Bredan

      Yes, we’re no longer on it — by our choice.

      • Jon Snow

        Thanks for the reply. Without wanting to pry (but actually by prying), is it anything to do with Hodinkee’s move to sell new watches?

        • David Bredan

          Nope, absolutely nothing at all. I believe it is more about dedicating this much work and resources into producing content and then someone taking it and posting it again on their own platform.

          • Jon Snow

            Fair enough. I’ll be able to uninstall Watchville, now!

          • David Bredan

            Ha! 😀

  • David Mohr

    For some reason, I find myself going back to look at the tourbillon in steel again and again. I have NEVER been a RO fan..just not my style. Maybe it is just the skeleton and I am admiring the machine itself more than the aesthetic…but I think I like it. Maybe I am not feeling well this evening and I will be back to normal in the morning.

  • Adi Susanto

    Do I have to sell my house to get this?

  • JosephWelke

    I can’t tell the time on this without stopping and thinking about it. Bleah.

  • Steve Kosovich

    I REALLY LIKE the gold one,but I already gave up my left nut to the Urologist.
    I like the design overall,very pleasing to look at and would wear well on my wrist.
    Now if you guys here would start a go fund me account for me!!!

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  • Ali Elali

    Do you think the re-edition of the beast chronograph will hold value as its limited to 50 pcs , i know its wrong to buy a watch as an investment , but it would be nice to know that it would also hold value . I am just in love with the blue contrast to steel and rubber . Thoughts anyone ?

    • Boron

      The chronograph isn’t limited, other than by production capacity, it’s the Tourbillons that are 50-piece LEs.

  • Lincolnshire Poacher

    That picture of the original ROO speaks to me far more than these new ones. I don’t usually prefer the looks of decades old watches.
    It seems like they’re going for that super-mechanically-complex, illegible, extremely high-tech look; that Richard Mille specialises in.

  • WINKS

    Not exactly their finest hour.

  • Pete L

    Love the 42mm reissue but will no doubt be very limited and very expensive.
    The tourbillon pieces don’t do it for me, particularly the gold one. I think Royal oaks (offshore or otherwise) should be steel (or maybe innovative materials like titanium/ceramic) but not precious metals as it sort of goes against what made the original special?These are fussy looking too with the skeletonised bezel.