The early 1970s was a time of great change within the watch industry, where the concept of a luxury watch in steel was a truly revolutionary idea. A mid-size version of the Royal Oak was first produced in the 1980s, as an alternative to the ‘Jumbo’ Royal Oak ref. 5402, with a reduced diameter of 36mm (over 39mm). As with all Audemars Piguet Royal Oak examples, the mid-size Royal Oak design features an integrated case and bracelet, with angular, beveled and polished edges, famously penned by Gerald Genta.
This platinum, time-only Royal Oak ref. 14790PT is a rare variation of the mid-size design. Platinum was used scarcely by Audemars Piguet, usually reserved for limited editions or short runs of special pieces, with platinum Royal Oak watches, across all configurations, existing in few examples. This specific watch is numbered '002' on the caseback, indicating that it was the second example of the model produced.
The polished screws, bezel and case edges fantastically contrast with the brushed surface of the case and bracelet. At 36mm in diameter, and only 7.5mm thick, this 14790PT case is a beautiful twist of perspectives and size. Thanks to the slim profile of the case and bracelet, it hugs the wrist, in a way that is both supremely comfortable, yet distinctively elegant and characterful.
The weight of the platinum case and bracelet gives a satisfying heft to the overall watch, with deep hallmarks on the back of the case and bracelet. The clasp itself is made out of white gold and features the hallmark of famed bracelet maker Gay Frères, who made bracelets for the original Nautilus and Royal Oak. The outer-case back correctly displays the unique serial number (D-170XX) of the watch, consistent with a production date during the 1990s.
This platinum, mid-size Royal Oak 14790PT features a slick, matte blue dial with diamond-set hour markers. Interestingly, it also has stick hour and minute hands, a feature which can be found on other precious metal Royal Oaks, such as the elusive 5402BC in white gold. The slick dial, with the absence of the tapisserie pattern, and diamond-set markers complements the precious metal of the case.
This mid-size Royal Oak is powered by the ultra-thin AP caliber 2225, derived from Jaeger-LeCoultre’s JLC 889 calibre movement. Formed of 280 components, the 40-jewel movement is rhodium-plated, with fausses côtes embellishment.
Viewings can be arranged in Central London by appointment only.