If you recall from my previous article about the Richard Mille RM 25-01 Tourbillon Adventure Slyvester Stallone, it has a choice of two bezel options. A small lever on the left-side of the case releases the bezel which has a bayonet-style attachment to the bezel. The more simple of the two bezels is a colorful rotating navigational bezel which is cool but a bit too busy for me with its four font colors and concentric rings of navigational information. While you can use the bezel for navigational purposes, I’m not sure anyone actually will use it for that.
Far more interesting and novel is the compass bezel attachment. The downside to the compass bezel is that you can’t really use it if you wish to conveniently glance at your wrist. In true military stealth fashion, the compass bezel for the Richard Mille RM 25-01 Tourbillon Adventure watch is hinged and can fold down to cover the dial. Only a small opening exists on the hood allowing for a view of the compass needle when it points to magnetic north. The hinge itself is given a layered and machined TPT carbon sheet which is beautiful. Despite the texture, the carbon insert on the titanium metal hood is perfectly smooth to the touch.
The compass needle itself is machined meticulously – looking as though it could slice through bread given the sharpness. To view the compass while on the wrist you lift up the hood to view it superimposed over the watch dial. Of course the downside of the compass is that you can’t just read the time with the hood closed. Having said that, with the hood closed you now have a tall tactical tuna can on your wrist just waiting to be the meat of a conversation starting “what’s hiding there on your wrist?”
Personally, I find compasses to be very interesting tools which probably deserve more time being married to luxury watches. Getting them right is a challenge and for that reason you rarely find traditional physical compass needles on watches. Rather, there are plenty of digital compasses on a variety of digital watches ranging from Casio to smartwatches. The last mechanical watch with a compass that I recall finding interesting was the Porsche Design P’6520 Heritage Compass (aBlogtoWatch hands-on here). You might call this a “poorer man’s version of the Richard Mille RM 25-01 Tourbillon Adventure.” The Porsche Design P’6520 was never “traditionally beautiful,” but is still a really cool object. Like the Richard Mille it has a hinge on the case which was actually the module for the time-telling movement and dial. Pressing buttons on the side of the case would release it, offering a view of the compass sitting below. The Porsche Design P’6520 is clearly the more practical choice (if that is what you are going for), and for the cost of one Richard Mille RM 25-01, you could probably purchase every P’6520 watch ever made…
Richard Mille does beat Porsche Design on exclusivity and looks. Again, the Richard Mille RM 25-01 Tourbillon Adventure is anything but traditionally handsome though it makes up for its patchwork design by being super cool and elaborate in execution. No one beats Richard Mille in regard to audacity in design as well as detail in components. The sheer level of tiny, hand-finished, bespoke parts that go into the RM 25-01 and other such exclusive timepieces is endlessly impressive. Despite its large size, the Tourbillon Adventure is also quite wearable. The 50.85mm-wide case is ergonomically designed to wrap around your wrist – and thanks to the TPT carbon and titanium case material, it is lightweight to wear. Of course, it wouldn’t be a proper John Rambo watch without some camouflage too. The rubber strap with its camouflage design nicely rounds out the wealthy weekend warrior vibe the timepiece is going for.
As a kid watching Rambo in the 1980s, I wouldn’t have known what to make of a timepiece such as this – even though I would have probably really liked it. No doubt I would not have understood the price – which is an opportunity to point you to an article I wrote discussing why Richard Mille timepieces are so expensive. To properly understand a product like this, you not only need to understand watches and modern luxury products, but you also need to understand Stallone’s relationship with the watch world, and himself as a sort of trend-setter. Richard Mille hasn’t discussed production numbers, but this will be a limited edition timepiece. It is intended for Sylvester Stallone, his close friends, and those Richard Mille customers out there who not only need a little bit more adventure in their lives, but also crave the thrill of wild survival. Price for the Richard Mille RM 25-01 Tourbillon Adventure Sylvester Stallone watch is $983,000 USD. Learn more at Richard Mille here.