Taken as a whole, the subjective coolness which I found in the watch dial is something that I believe helped make me want to wear it more. The Romain Jerome Steampunk Auto 46 dial is art, and it made a bold and loud message to those who viewed it on my wrist. It is hard to hate, and easy to find novel and appealing. Perhaps not as a daily wear, but I would reckon that many guys who like big machines will easily find a place for a watch like this from Romain Jerome in their life – assuming they can afford the coin required to buy one, that is.
As I mentioned, even though the Romain Jerome Steampunk Auto 46 looks durable and like a serious tool watch, it isn’t. Of course, it has a sapphire crystal and the crown does screw down, but the case is merely water resistant to 30 meters, and I wouldn’t try to test out further “steampunking” the case with your own active lifestyle. Like that precious black leather biker jacket you may own, even though it looks like it is meant to be worn while rolling around on pavement, you’d probably like to avoid doing that at all cost. Use the same approach when considering when and where, to wear a timepiece like the Romain Jerome Steampunk Auto 46.
Don’t forget this isn’t some actual cool hip sports watch but a luxury art timepiece designed by Europeans to fit into a particular visual and thematic aesthetic. In that, the Romain Jerome Steampunk Auto 46 does an excellent job, and its primary purpose to move you emotionally certainly succeeds (at least in my case).
Above, I mentioned the strap which I happened to really like. In thick black leather, the strap sort of tapers in thickness from where it meets the case to the deployant clasp. It’s just a nice looking and feeling strap (despite being rigid) that melds with the design of the case very well.
Inside the Romain Jerome Steampunk Auto 46 watch is the Romain Jerome caliber RJ003-A automatic movement. It is a base Concepto (probably, given what movements are in most Romain Jerome watches) and operates at 4Hz with 40 hours of power reserve. Again, the automatic movement features just the time with a subsidiary seconds dial.
Like all of the brand’s watches, the Romain Jerome Steampunk Auto 46 is a limited edition and there are three versions to the collection in addition to this RJ.T.AU.SP.006.01 model which is actually called the Steampunk Auto Gunmetal Steel. It is also the least expensive model, and I believe among the least expensive Romain Jerome watches available now. The Romain Jerome Steampunk Auto 46 collection also contains the reference RJ.T.AU.SP.007.01 Steampunk Auto Gunmetal Black for $12,500 which is in all black tones without the polished steel elements, making it a “phantom” watch. Romain Jerome also produced the ref. RJ.T.AU.SP.008.01 Steampunk Auto Red in 18k red gold and steel priced at $21,950. Each of the models is a limited edition of 999 pieces. Price for my favorite model which is this Steampunk Auto Gunmetal Steel ref. RJ.T.AU.SP.006.01 is $10,950. romainjerome.ch
>Brand: Romain Jerome
>Model: Steampunk Auto 46 (reference RJ.T.AU.SP.006.01 as tested)
>Price: $10,950 USD
>Would reviewer personally wear it: Yes
>Friend we’d recommend it to first: Lover of avant-garde luxury art watches – that nevertheless have a super-macho twist to them.
>Best characteristic of watch: At least for me, this was a surprisingly well-composed watch that blended a unique design with comfortable features. I also like the monochromatic gray tones of this version which make the design much more fashionably versatile.
>Worst characteristic of watch: Certainly not for everyone (though that is a plus for many people). Dial could have better luminant, for sure, and case could have more water resistance to really amplify the theme. Despite low production numbers and rarity, this and other Romain Jerome watches remain rather expensive.