To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the launch of the Royal Oak, Audemars Piguet released the Royal Oak Jubilee ref. 14802 limited edition in 1992. With a 1,000 pieces total including the majority in stainless steel, a few in 18K yellow gold and only 10 in platinum. While the 18K yellow gold model and the platinum one came with one dial, the stainless steel model was available with two different dials that included a cobalt blue smoke-tinted treated like the original Royal Oak from 1972 and a salmon one which became the most special one amongst watch collectors.
About the Royal Oak Jubilee
With a 39 mm case in stainless steel with the exact same proportions of the original Royal Oak from 1972 but with a display case back, the watch was sold in a special presentation wooden box in the shape of an octagon and with a prominent lip resembling the octagonal bezel of the Royal Oak. The box is light brown —almost maple color— and lined with green suede.
Staying true to the DNA of the original Royal Oak, the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Jubilee ref. 14802ST with salmon dial features a petite tapisserie 'Clous de Paris' guilloché pattern with date aperture at 3 o'clock and AP applied logo at 12 o'clock. Considering that this watch is powered by the AP calibre 2121, the Royal Oak Jubilee doesn't include a seconds hand.
Much like a supple joint, the bracelet is made up of a juxtaposition of small parts graduated by decreasing size. An exemplary configuration and the ideal model to hold the case firmly in place while providing complete freedom for wrist movements just like on the original Royal Oak from 1972.
The sophisticated construction of the Royal Oak bracelet uses parts that are all different in size. Arranged in diminishing order so as not to weight down the watch, they are graduated into seven different sizes, alternating bracelet links and connecting studs. Each of these parts, is meticulously machined, pierced, polished and checked in order to fit together perfectly with no gaps or unevenness.
Just like all other extra-thin or Royal Oak Jumbos, the Royal Oak Jubilee is powered by the legendary Audemars Piguet automatic calibre 2121. Originally created as the result of a collaborative effort led by Jaeger-LeCoultre and with the holy trinity of watchmaking —Audemars Piguet, Patek Philippe and Vacheron Constantin— fully involved, the calibre 2121 is a variant based off of the JLC calibre 920 and is the thinnest automatic movement —with a central rotor— ever made.
For this particular rendition of the Royal Oak Jubilee, Audemars Piguet decided to give the movement a very unique skeletonized oscillating weight in 21K gold that features various design elements including the iconic octagonal bezel of the Royal Oak as well as the hex bolts that secure the bezel to the case back.
This movement with a pullout crown and non-quick-set calendar mechanism, is composed of 247 parts and 36 jewels. Beating at a frequency of 19,800 vph —2.75 Hz— the movement provides a power reserve of 40 hours when fully wound.
On the Wrist & Pricing
On the wrist, the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Jubilee ref. 14802ST wears true to its size with impeccable wrist presence. Just like the original Royal Oak Jumbo released in 1972, it takes more than money to wear a Royal Oak.
With an avant-garde design for its time, Gerald Genta set the blueprint and paved the road for one of the most iconic watches in the history of modern watchmaking. At 45 years old and counting, the Royal Oak looks as good today as it did when it was first presented as an all-purpose watch to Italian distributor Carlo De Marchi and Swiss distributor Charles Bauty.
Approximate Price $14,000-20,000 USD depending on condition and availability of box and papers. For more info on this iconic watch click here.