If you read the title and thought “Oh no, they’re discontinuing the Jumbo” relax, the Jumbo’s not going anywhere. What Audemars Piguet mean is that this will be the last 1-of-1, piece unique based on the Jumbo in its current form. Which makes this Royal Oak extra special as it’s both a swansong and a hint that AP have new and exciting projects in the pipeline. The Royal Oak “Jumbo” Extra-Thin Only Watch was created for Only Watch 2021, the premier charity auction focussing on unique timepieces.
The Royal Oak design as we know it, especially for the Jumbo, has been more or less set in stone since 1972 and it’s only right that this version adheres to the classic appearance. The octagonal case and Petite Tapisserie dial are as iconic as it’s possible to get in watchmaking. However, this watch isn’t without innovation – the case and bracelet are constructed from a combination of titanium and polished Bulk Metallic Glass, which is the first time AP have used that material.
Bulk Metallic Glass is a palladium-based alloy that, when cooled rapidly, displays the characteristics of glass such as transparency, amorphicity and a hard-wearing nature. That’s a lot of big words but the upshot is that it’s a type of glass that reflects light in an interesting way because of its non-crystalline structure.
Housed inside is the extra-thin Calibre 2121, it is specifically this movement that will never be used in a unique piece again, thus marking the end of unique Ref. 15202s. The automatic calibre with 40-hour power reserve has been used in Royal Oaks since 1972, making it a stalwart of range for close to 50 years. But a lot can change in 50 years and a 40-hour power reserve really doesn’t cut it these days, especially in extraordinary timepieces like piece uniques.
As with all other Only Watch timepieces, The Royal Oak “Jumbo” Extra-Thin Only Watch will be available at auction later this year for charity. You can check out Tudor’s offering here.
Price & Specs:
Model: Audemars Piguet Royal Oak “Jumbo” Extra-Thin Only Watch
Case/Dial: 39mm diameter x 8.1mm height, sandblasted titanium case, grey dial with “Petite Tapisserie” pattern dial
Water resistance: 50m (5 bar)
Movement: Manufacture Calibre 2121, automatic, 36 jewels, 247 parts
Frequency: 19,800 vph (2.75 Hz)
Power Reserve: 40h
Functions: Hour, minutes, date
Strap: Titanium bracelet
Price/Availability: An estimate of CHF 160,000 – 320,000, 1 unique piece produced
More details at Only Watch.