Rare Bird: Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore ref. 25721TI. The Titanium Lightweight Beast.

Since we are the largest source of information on the web for all Audemars Piguet related things, we want to talk about a watch that tends to fly under the radar and that we like to refer to as a rare bird. Slightly less important than the first Royal Oak Offshore ‘The Beast’, the ‘titanium beast’ is still quite rare with very low production numbers. Often mistaken by many as the first Royal Oak Offshore, the titanium reference 25721TI was released seven years after the launch of the original Royal Oak Offshore ref. 25721ST in stainless steel. The reference 25721TI in titanium was only produced for four years and six dials were available at the time. Now, among those six dials, the dials on reference 25721TI.OO.1000TI.01 and reference 25721TI.OO.1000TI.03 —featured here— are the most rare and the nicest ones in our opinion.

The Six Different References

The Royal Oak Offshore reference 25721TI.OO.1000TI.01 features a grey dial with blue surrounds on the subdials, reference 25721TI.OO.1000TI.02 has the same queen blue dial as the original Royal Oak Offshore ‘The Beast’, reference 25721TI.OO.1000TI.03 is the one featured here in arctic white with blue surrounds on the subdials, reference 25721TI.OO.1000TI.04 is a blue themes with white Arabic numerals and silver subdials, reference 25721TI.OO.1000TI.05 is an all white dial with white subdials and reference 25721TI.OO.1000TI.06 is a black themes with white Arabic numerals.

What We Love About this Watch

Not only the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore is a very understated watch but it is also a perfect daily wearer that can take on the daily abuse of its owners. Besides its unique luster and hue, titanium is a very noble metal that is very good at concealing scratches and rub offs unlike stainless steel. Even though titanium is less dense and less strong than certain types of steel, titanium can withstand way more abuse as it is very resistant, anti-magnetic and anti-corrosive.

Equipped with the same blue pushers and crown as ‘The Beast’, the pushers and crown are wrapped with a rubber-like material developed by Dupont called 'therban'. This material, is a high performance elastomer that is fireproof to very high temperatures.

A white dial is not only very versatile but it makes watches appear bigger. The white grande tapisserie dial along with the navy blue surrounds on the counters and the blue flange make for a great color combination. Additionally, the brushed silver minute track on the outer part of the dial makes for yet another interesting element in the overall appearance of the watch.

The Royal Oak Offshore bracelet is a sturdier and rounder version of the incredibly well made Royal Oak bracelet. 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. The sophisticated construction of the Royal Oak Offshore 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.

The Movement

Protected by an anti-magnetic inner cover underneath the case back lies the calibre 2226/2840. From 1993 through early 2007, the beating heart inside all Offshores was this movement. The Rubber Clad, up until its last production date, was still fitted with the older calibre 2226/2840. At the time the calibre was switched, the reference for the Royal Oak Offshore Safari changed to 26170ST. Additionally, during the production of the G-serials, all Royal Oak Offshores were fitted with an anti-reflective coated loupe on the date aperture in order to improve its readability. Not the case on this titanium beast.

On the Wrist & Pricing

The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore ref. 25721TI in titanium is an amazing reference and one of the most comfortable Royal Oak Offshores out there due to its light construction. Its unique look and wrist presence are unparalleled, and for those watchlifestylers that are in the know, running into one of this watches in the wild is an unforgettable experience. This watch is a true rare bird in all the sense of the word. If you find one, expect to pay anywhere between $15,000-20,000 USD based on the availability of box and papers and the overall condition of the watch.

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