When I close my eyes and think “pure summer watch,” some variant of the Royal Oak Offshore comes to mind. The Offshore is among the most successful sequels to classic watch design that a high-end Swiss watchmaker has ever put forward. The Royal Oak Offshore’s many variations over the last 27 years are a testament to its widespread acceptance, no easy feat for a design that sought to expand upon an almost universally lauded classic. Today, we’ve got three new Offshore Selfwinding Chronographs that weave multicolored ceramic into their designs.
While each of these comes in a 44mm black ceramic case, from there they diverge a bit. The examples directly above incorporate colorful ceramic bezels, chronograph pushers, and crowns. The guards protecting the pushers are made of titanium. The third model (below) trades some of the colorful ceramic accents for 18-karat pink gold, with the chronograph pushers and crown in black ceramic. In all of the models, the applied hour markers that have typified the 44mm variation of the Royal Oak Offshore Selfwinding Chronograph have been replaced with large, legible numerals that recall certain executions of the 42mm Offshore Chrono.
The new Offshores are outfitted with the familiar AP Cal. 3126/3840 automatic chronograph caliber, which offers 50 hours of power reserve and runs at AP’s standard rate of 21,600 vph, or 3 Hz. It’s an AP in-house automatic movement fitted with a chronograph module by Dubois Depraz.
All three new versions of the Royal Oak Offshore Selfwinding Chronograph come on textured rubber straps with grooves matched to their cases. As you can see in the photo above, the patterned texture continues onto the side of the strap. They will be available exclusively at AP boutiques worldwide.
These are big watches at 44mm x 14.4mm, but the chunky aesthetic works and is frankly part of the package that a Royal Oak Offshore customer is buying into. After all, the first Royal Oak Offshore was a large-for-its time 42mm and helped to set the tone for the oversized watch trend that would come to define the latter part of the 1990s and the Aughts. It was also designed from the get-go to be a robust, oversized chronograph.
The use of bright colors has often been found in the Offshore. While white or black ceramic might cause you to look twice at a conventional Royal Oak like the ceramic perpetual, the blue and green bezels and pushers we see here feel naturally home in the Offshore.
And the details of the finishing on the ceramic bezels appear to be every bit as good as they are on the gold-bezeled variation, as I’d expect of an AP ceramic piece. The material is hardly a new thing for AP, or the Offshore for that matter, but these new black ceramic options with colorful accents look fresh. In all three new versions of the Offshore Chrono, the colors are vibrant but not so loud that I would consign them just to summer wear. They’re big, they’re bold, and they’re probably not gonna be for everybody; but I’d be lying if I told you I didn’t think these watches are super cool.
Brand: Audemars Piguet
Model: Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph
Reference Number: Black ceramic and pink gold: 26405NR.OO.A002CA.01; black and green ceramic: 26405CE.OO.A056CA.01; black and blue ceramic: 26405CE.OO.A030CA.01
Case Material: 26405NR.OO.A002CA.01: black ceramic with pink gold accents; 26405CE.OO.A056CA.01: black ceramic with green ceramic accents; 26405CE.OO.A030CA.01: black ceramic with blue ceramic accents
Caseback: Sapphire crystal and titanium exhibition caseback
Dial Color: 26405NR.OO.A002CA.01: Smoked grey “Mega Tapisserie” pattern dial, rhodium-toned counters, silver-toned inner bezel; 26405CE.OO.A056CA.01: smoked green “Mega Tapisserie” pattern dial, rhodium-toned counters, black inner bezel; 26405CE.OO.A030CA.01: smoked blue “Mega Tapisserie” pattern dial, rhodium-toned counters, black inner bezel
Indexes: White-gold Arabic numerals on 26405CE.OO.A030CA.01; otherwise, pink-gold Arabic numerals
Water Resistance: 100 meters
Strap/Bracelet: 26405NR.OO.A002CA.01: Grey textured rubber strap with an 18-karat pink-gold pin buckle; 26405CE.OO.A056CA.01: Green textured rubber strap with a titanium pin buckle; 26405CE.OO.A030CA.01: Blue textured rubber strap with a titanium pin buckle
Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds, date, chronograph
Thickness: 7.16 mm
Power Reserve: 50 hours
Frequency: 21,600 vph
Pricing & Availability
Price: Ref. 26405NR.OO.A002CA.01 (black ceramic and pink gold accents): $ 42,900; 26405CE.OO.A056CA.01 (black ceramic with green ceramic accents): $ 34,900; 26405CE.OO.A030CA.01 (black ceramic with blue ceramic accents): $ 34,900
Availability: Audemars Piguet Boutique Exclusivity
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