With its extra-thin round bezel and stylised horns, the unusual design of the Code 11.59 chronograph from Audemars Piguet is sure to catch the eye. Pushing back the technical limits of high-flying finishes, the perfect alternation of satined and polished surfaces of the hand-made case strengthens the aesthetic of the instrument. Designed for both men and women, this chronograph, available in all-white gold, all rose gold and also with a case combining white and rose gold, is fundamentally in tune with the times with its 41 mm diameter. The curved profile of this high-potential product guarantees ergonomics and a comfortable fit, whatever the size of the wrist. This effective watch is also mechanically competent with its integrated “in house” automatic chronograph calibre, ref. 4401.
An immaculate integrated calibre
Like all well-bred watches, it contains a column wheel and a flyback mechanism, visible through the sapphire transparent case back. This additional function came into existence during the 1930s and allows the wearer to stop and resume timekeeping without manually going through the steps of stopping and resetting.
The flyback function was originally designed for on-the-fly use by airline pilots who had to make their course from the information provided by radio beacons. Today, this little practical extra is still bound to be useful, for example in a succession of short time measurements. This modern watch is also equipped with a patented mechanism of function setting, that provides stability and accuracy to the whole. It also has a large diameter (32 mm) which offers the guarantee of superior chronometry. As we know, the size of the components has a considerable influence on the quality of their manufacture, and by extension on the proper operation of the kinetic assembly, once the pieces are assembled by hand in the workshops at Le Brassus, a village of La Vallée de Joux, in Switzerland. For even more accuracy and durability, this 367-component movement boasts a patented mechanism, ensuring that each counter hand is reset to zero. It is also equipped with a vertical clutch system, fare more effective than the traditional side versions. This mechanism prevents the chrono hand from jumping when the function is turned on.
This system allows the wearer of the piece to keep the chronograph engaged at all times, without its operation functioning affecting the accuracy of the time function or the duration of the power reserve. The innovative 4401 calibre, designed to be seen, highlights the functions and the components that are usually hidden, such as the column wheel or the hammers of the chronograph. Particular care was taken with the hand-made finishes, a reflection of the uncompromising spirit of the Audemars Piguet manufacture – one of the only major maisons still owned by their founding families.
To provide optimal visibility, the 22-carat gold oscillating weight is fully open worked and associated to a large-diameter ball bearing, to ensure perfect operation, under all conditions. Despite its generous dimensions, this movement whose regulating organs vibrate at 4 Hertz (28,800 alterations per hour) is only 6.8mm thin. Its 70-hour power reserve provides excellent efficiency. The chronograph displays hour and minutes, permanent seconds in a counter at 6 o’clock, and date in an aperture at 4 o’clock. When the appropriate pushers are engaged, the watch can measure short time units and displays elapsed time in minutes at 9 o’clock and in hours at 3 o’clock.
Ultimately, this multi-faceted and functional sporty-chic chronograph offered in a smoked sun-brushed lacquered dial and available in various colours (deep grey, light grey, burgundy, and purple) is both sober and sophisticated. Its thin bezel is a true aesthetic asset and gives a wide clearance to the dial, bearing the name of the brand in precious gold, achieved through an ultra-modern galvanic growth technology. With its rare balance, this modern instrument sports a fine tachymeter scale on the bezel. It plays the card of versatility, between sporty and urban chic. This is why it can be worn simply on an alligator strap, or more dynamically on a rubber strap.
Price : €45,600