A year after its official launch, Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet continues to evolve with five new Selfwinding date, hour, minute and second references, plus five new Selfwinding Chronograph models. The five examples in the two model sets each have smoked lacquered dials with sunburst pattern in hues of blue, burgundy, purple, light grey and dark grey.
The red shades and rich nuances of the two sunburst smoked burgundy lacquered dials illuminate the 18-carat white gold case, and are complemented by 18-carat white gold hands and applied hour-markers.
The two smoked blue lacquered dials are in 18-carat pink gold. Each dial’s sunburst effect recalls underwater sun rays. The black inner bezel provides depth and intensity, while the double-curved glare-proofed sapphire crystal offers a unique play of light.
Bringing together the calm stability of blue and the intensity of red, the two purple dials suggests uncompromising elegance. The purple of the dials are contrasted by their 18-carat pink gold cases and the pink gold applied hour-markers and hands.
The remaining four examples have distinctive two-tone gold cases, two in light grey and two in dark grey. Here, the 18-carat white gold bezel, lugs and caseback are subtly enhanced by an 18-carat pink gold middle case. The interweaving of white and pink gold foregrounds the case’s multifaceted architecture and high-end hand-finishing techniques. The sapphire caseback also reveals the 22-carat pink gold oscillating weight matching the middle case’s colour.
Two-tone gold cases are extremely rare in the history of Audemars Piguet’s wristwatches. Out of the 550 wristwatches produced and sold between 1882 and 1969, only eight examples combined two types of gold. The blend of white and pink gold was particularly rare, with only one wristwatch recorded in the Manufacture’s archives before 1978. Although this combination has become more prevalent today, it remains a distinct symbol of refinement and elegance.
While the understated nuances of the light grey sunburst lacquered dial brings forward refined light, the smoked grey sunburst lacquered dial gives depth to the watch. The latter’s black inner bezel accentuates the dial’s nuances.
The dials’ artistry is enhanced by the watch’s extra-thin bezel and double-curved glare-proofed sapphire crystal. Playing with depth and light, this complex glass brings forward the detailed work adorning the dials, including the applied polished Audemars Piguet gold signature realised in galvanic growth.
The dials’ elegant colours complement the Code 11.59’s contemporary the unconventional case design, composed of an octagonal middle case and a round extra-thin bezel and stylised lugs. The perfectly aligned alternation of satin-brushed and polished surfaces adorning the case was only achievable by hand.
These new Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet models are equipped with the Manufacture’s latest generation of self-winding and self-winding chronograph movements released last year.
The Selfwinding models house calibre 4302, an automatic movement with second and instant-jump date indication. The Selfwinding Chronograph models are powered by calibre 4401, an integrated chronograph with column wheel and flyback function that enables a restart of the chronograph without stopping and resetting it first. It has a patented zero resetting mechanism which ensures that each one of the counter hands is seamlessly reset to zero. It is also equipped with a vertical clutch system that prevents hands from jumping when the chronograph is started or stopped.
Calibre 4401 was conceived to highlight functions and components usually hidden from view, such as the column wheel and the so-called “dance” of the chronograph hammers when the chronograph is reset to zero. The watch’s dedicated open-worked oscillating weight in 22-carat gold further provides an unobstructed view on the movement.
Both movements are equipped with a patented setting mechanism that brings stability and precision when adjusting the watch’s functions. With a large diameter of 32 mm, these movements also present reinforced chronometry. Visible through the watch’s caseback, these two calibres uphold fine watchmaking tradition with refined hand-finishing techniques including “traits tirés,” “Côtes de Genève,” circular graining, circular satin, and diamond-polished angles.
“The development of calibres 4302 and 4401 came with multiple technical challenges, including the design of the resetting mechanism to ensure the three chronograph counters’ perfect return to zero. The synchronisation of their developments with the launch of the collection Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet brought an added complication, which we managed thanks to the relentless hard work of numerous people from different horizons. It was an unforgettable human adventure,” says Lucas Raggi, Development Director at Audemars Piguet.