AUDEMARS PIGUET CODE 11.59

At SIHH 2019 haute-horlogerie exhibition in Geneva, Swiss luxury watch manufacture Audemars Piguet has launched a brand new watch collection, the CODE 11.59, which represents a major design and technological transformation in the history of the oldest fine watchmaking manufacturer still in the hands of its founding families.

For over 144 years, Audemars Piguet has nurtured generations of talented craftspeople dedicated to practicing their skills at the highest level, building on tradition, while consistently breaking the well-mastered rules of horology. Never taking its savoir-faire for granted, Audemars Piguet continuously challenges its practices and production standards in an endless quest for artistry, excellence and technical perfection.

Devoted to the preservation and transmission of its passion, savoir-faire and avant-garde spirit, Audemars Piguet continues to infuse its timepieces with enduring values of artistic excellence and technical mastery.

Going against the flow of industrialisation in 1875, Jules Louis Audemars and Edward Auguste Piguet turned their backs on the lure of mass markets, daring to craft unique complicated watches. Since then, Audemars Piguet has charted its own course. A century later, Audemars Piguet continued to create bold complicated wristwatches in defiance of the quartz crisis, venturing to develop the world’s thinnest self-winding perpetual calendar in 1978 and paving the way for the revival of classical mechanical complications.

With the emergence of the digital age, Audemars Piguet has kept following its own path, using transformative technologies to create ground-breaking timepieces. Passionate, innovative, and persevering, Audemars Piguet’s craftsmen continuously develop new skills and techniques, broadening their savoir-faire to set rule-breaking trends.

With 13 different models, including four complications in one go, Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet represents one of the most important and comprehensive launches in the Manufacture’s history.

Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet – Special Features

The Round, the Octagonal and the Beyond

Audemars Piguet interweaves tensions and opposite forces in the design of the collection’s uniquely recognisable case. By boldly embedding an octagonal middle case within a round case, Audemars Piguet cuts through the timeline of its long history of form and design experimentations. The upper part of the open-worked lugs is welded to the extra-thin bezel, while the lower part leans delicately against the caseback in perfect alignment.

All teams at Audemars Piguet have been implicated in their design and manufacture. New processes challenging traditional production standards were developed to solder the lugs to this extremely thin surface.

With its optimum curved ergonomics, the case has been conceived to adjust to different wrist sizes, making it comfortable for all to wear despite its 41 mm in diameter. Satin-brushed, bevelled and polished, the bezel, lugs and case present high complexity finishing techniques usually found on calibres.

The Optical Crystal Experience

The Manufacture has created a complex double curved glare-proofed sapphire crystal, whose tense, arched profile embodies the watch’s contemporary design. The glass’s internal surface is shaped like a dome, while its external surface is vertically curved from 6 to 12 o’clock. Its shape perfectly integrates the extra-thin bezel and extends from edge to edge.

Playing with depth, perspective and light, this double curved sapphire crystal dives into the world of optics for a unique visual experience, while enhancing the detailed work on the dial. The polished chamfer all around the glass adds the finishing touch, while echoing the perfect finish of the bezel, lugs and case.

Raised 3-D Logo Created Atom by Atom and Applied by Hand

The extra-thin bezel brings forward the artistry of the smooth lacquered dial. The Audemars Piguet signature, which measures 12.5 mm in length, presents a unique topography, driving the art of horology to its limits.

Made of thin layers of 24-carat gold, it is achieved through a chemical process akin to 3-D printing known as galvanic growth. Each letter is connected with links approximately the size of a hair and placed by hand on the dial with tiny legs almost invisible to the eye.

Galvanic growth, which derives from micro-electronics, enables to reach micrometric precision. Although used in horology for movements, this technique is used for the first time with 24-carat gold.

Going against initial warnings regarding the feasibility of such a logo, Audemars Piguet engineers followed their firm convictions. Making no compromise, they went through an extensive prototyping process, testing a wide array of variations before settling on final procedures and proportions.

Six Calibres of the Latest Generation

This collection features a large choice of six in-house calibres of the latest generation. Among these six calibres, three are new: an integrated column wheel chronograph with flyback function, a self-winding calibre with seconds and date indication, and a self-winding flying tourbillon calibre.

High-end finishing is the very essence of Audemars Piguet’s watches. In respect of Audemars Piguet’s traditions and values, these movements are beautifully decorated to the slightest details with a wide array of finishing techniques, including “traits tirés”, “Côtes de Genève”, circular graining, circular satin, diamond-polished angles and gold-toned engravings.

Code 11.59 – Models

Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet – Self-winding

The deep blue lacquered dial is enhanced by the white gold case, an applied gold 3-D Audemars Piguet signature made in galvanic growth, as well as curved gold indexes and Arabic numerals.

This watch is powered by a new self-winding movement, calibre 4302, that features a dedicated 22-carat gold oscillating weight. With a large diameter of 32 mm and a frequency of 4 Hertz, this calibre insures reliability and accuracy.

The straight integration of the strap in the continuity of the open-worked lugs reveals the complex architecture of the case and its refined hand-finishing.

Technical details

References (Pink Gold)

15210OR.OO.A099CR.01
15210OR.OO.A002CR.01

Movement
Self-winding Manufacture calibre 4302
Total diameter: 32 mm (14 lignes)
Total thickness: 4.80 mm
Number of jewels: 32
Number of parts: 257
Minimal guaranteed power reserve: 70 h
Frequency of balance wheel:
4 Hz (= 28,800 vibrations/hour)

Functions
Hours
Minutes
Centre seconds
Date

Case
41 mm diameter
18-carat pink gold case
Glare-proofed sapphire crystal and caseback
Water-resistant to 30 m

Dial
Lacquered white or black dial
18-carat pink gold applied hour-markers and hands
24-carat pink gold applied logo in galvanic growth
Lacquered white or black inner bezel

Strap
Hand-stitched “large square scale” brown or black alligator strap with 18-carat pink gold pin buckle

References (White Gold)

15210BC.OO.A321CR.01
15210BC.OO.A002CR.01

Movement
Self-winding Manufacture calibre 4302
Total diameter: 32 mm (14 lignes)
Total thickness: 4.80 mm
Number of jewels: 32
Number of parts: 257
Minimal guaranteed power reserve: 70 h
Frequency of balance wheel:
4 Hz (= 28,800 vibrations/hour)

Functions
Hours
Minutes
Centre seconds
Date

Case
41 mm diameter
18-carat white gold case
Glare-proofed sapphire crystal and caseback
Water-resistant to 30 m

Dial
Lacquered blue or black dial
18-carat white gold applied hour-markers and hands
24-carat white gold applied logo in galvanic growth
Lacquered blue or black inner bezel

Strap
Hand-stitched “large square scale” blue or black alligator strap with 18-carat white gold pin buckle

Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet – Self-winding Chronograph

The self-winding chronograph’s deep blue lacquered dial offers a perfect mirror finish. The pink gold case echoes the polished gold curved indexes and singular numeral at 12 o’clock as well as the raised logo and long stick hands. The chronograph counters are circled by gold threads with polished V angles, a difficult finishing on lacquered dials.

The new in-house calibre 4401 symbolizes Audemars Piguet’s spirit of independence and constant quest for innovation. This calibre is endowed with an instant-jump date indication, integrated column wheel chronograph and flyback function that enables to re-start the chronograph without stopping and resetting it first.

It has 70 hours of power reserve, as well as a dedicated 22-carat pink gold open-worked oscillating weight visible through the caseback. With a frequency of 4 Herz, this calibre also presents reinforced chronometry.

This movement features a variety of refined finishing techniques including “traits tirés”, diamond-polished angles, “Côtes de Genève”, circular graining, chamfering and gold-toned engraving. The watch is also available in white gold.

Technical details

References (pink gold)
26393OR.OO.A321CR.01
26393OR.OO.A002CR.01

Movement
Self-winding Manufacture calibre 4401
Total diameter: 32 mm (14 lignes)
Total thickness: 6.80 mm
Number of jewels: 40
Number of parts: 367
Minimal guaranteed power reserve: 70 h
Frequency of balance wheel:
4 Hz (= 28,800 vibrations/hour)

Functions
Flyback chronograph
Hours
Minutes
Small seconds
Date

Case
41 mm diameter
18-carat pink gold case
Glare-proofed sapphire crystal and caseback
Water-resistant to 30 m

Dial
Lacquered blue or black dial and counters
18-carat pink gold applied hour-markers and hands
24-carat pink gold applied logo in galvanic growth
Lacquered blue or black inner bezel

Strap
Hand-stitched “large square scale” blue or black alligator strap with 18-carat pink gold pin buckle

References (white gold)
26393BC.OO.A321CR.01
26393BC.OO.A002CR.01

Movement
Self-winding Manufacture calibre 4401
Total diameter: 32 mm (14 lignes)
Total thickness: 6.80 mm
Number of jewels: 40
Number of parts: 367
Minimal guaranteed power reserve: 70 h
Frequency of balance wheel:
4 Hz (= 28,800 vibrations/hour)
Watch Technical Data

Functions
Flyback chronograph
Hours
Minutes
Small seconds
Date

Case
41 mm diameter
18-carat white gold case
Glare-proofed sapphire crystal and caseback
Water-resistant to 30 m

Dial
Lacquered blue or black dial and counters
18-carat white gold applied hour-markers and hands
24-carat white gold applied logo in galvanic growth
Lacquered blue or black inner bezel

Strap
Hand-stitched “large square scale” blue or black alligator strap with 18-carat white gold pin buckle

Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet – Perpetual Calendar

This model houses self-winding Manufacture calibre 5134 optimised with the collection’s signature open-worked weight in 22-carat gold. A perpetual calendar automatically adjusts short months, and adds a day to February each leap year. If worn permanently, it will require an adjustment in 2100 only. This adjustment will consist in setting the date manually from February 29th to March 1st.

An astronomical watch par excellence, this perpetual calendar model features a dark blue aventurine dial and sub-dials recalling a star-lit sky. Aventurine glass was created in the 17th century thanks to a chance manipulation (“all’avventura”) in a Murano glass factory when copper filings were dropped into cooling molten glass, creating a constellation of sparkling particles. Today, this glass is obtained by introducing black copper oxide and cobalt that give the blue colour to the glass. The pink gold case, hands and applied hour-markers enrich the deep blue sparkling constellation of the aventurine dial.

The dial’s starry particles resonate with the moon indication at 6 o’clock. A photographic image of the moon is reproduced through laser engraving and applied on an aventurine disc that subtly matches the design of the dial. The astronomical moon serves to diminish the daily display error. Thanks to this function, adjustment is required once every 122 years and 108 days.

In addition to providing the astronomical moon indication at 6 o’clock, the perpetual calendar indicates the day number and week day at 3 and 9 o’clock respectively, the month at 12 o’clock, the week numbers on the lacquered blue inner bezel, as well as the hours and minutes.

Technical details

Reference
26394OR.OO.D321CR.01

Movement
Self-winding Manufacture calibre 5134
Total diameter: 29 mm (123/4 lignes)
Total thickness: 4.31 mm
Number of jewels: 38
Number of parts: 374
Minimal guaranteed power reserve: 40 h
Frequency of balance wheel: 2.75 Hz (= 19,800 vibrations/hour)

Functions
Perpetual calendar with week indication
Day,Date, Astronomical moon, Month, Leap year
Hours, Minutes

Case
41 mm diameter
18-carat pink gold case
Glare-proofed sapphire crystal and caseback
Water-resistant to 20 m

Dial
Blue aventurine dial and sub-dials
18-carat pink gold applied hour-markers and hands
Lacquered blue inner bezel

Strap
Hand-stitched “large square scale” blue alligator strap with 18-carat pink gold folding clasp

Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet – Self-winding Flying Tourbillon

The self-winding flying tourbillon gold dial is covered with “Grand Feu” enamel. Every enamel dial is unique due to the organic nature of the material and hand-made manufacturing technique. The pink gold applied hour-markers and hands illuminate the black dial. The Audemars Piguet signature is made in enamel.

It is the first time at Audemars Piguet that a self-winding movement features a central rotor and a flying tourbillon. Calibre 2950 is finished with “Côtes de Genève”, snailing and hand-polished bevels on the movement’s caseback side. The open-worked oscillating weight—visible through the caseback—echoes the colour of the case.

The oscillating weight comes in pink gold for the pink gold model, and in rhodium-toned pink gold for the white gold model. The movement is finished with circular graining and circular satin on the dial side.

Technical details

References
26396BC.OO.D321CR.01
26396OR.OO.D002CR.01

Movement
Self-winding Manufacture calibre 2950
Total diameter: 31.50 mm (14 lignes)
Total thickness: 6.24 mm
Number of jewels: 27
Number of parts: 270
Minimal guaranteed power reserve: 65 h
Frequency of balance wheel: 3 Hz (= 21,600 vibrations/hour)

Functions
Flying tourbillon
Hours
Minutes

Case
41 mm diameter
18-carat white gold or pink gold case
Glare-proofed sapphire crystal and caseback
Water-resistant to 30 m

Dial
Smoked blue or black enamel dial
18-carat white gold or pink gold applied hour-markers and hands
Enamel transferred logo
Lacquered black inner bezel

Strap
Hand-stitched “large square scale” blue or black alligator strap with 18-carat white gold or pink gold folding clasp

Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet – Tourbillon Open-worked

This model houses a unique hand-wound tourbillon open-worked movement, calibre 2948 that conveys extreme complexity and depth. The contrast created between the 18-carat pink gold case and the dark open-worked rhodium German silver mainplate and PVD bridges, exclusively designed for this collection, accentuates the movement’s artistry and 3-D effect.

The gold-toned balance wheel adds a subtle touch. With 70 hand-polished V angles, the hand finishing on this 4.97 mm thick movement pushes the open-working art to new heights.

Technical details

Reference
26600OR.OO.D002CR.01

Movement
Hand-wound Manufacture calibre 2948
Total diameter: 32.25 mm (141/3 lignes)
Total thickness: 4.97 mm
Number of jewels: 19
Number of parts: 196
Minimal guaranteed power reserve: 80 h
Frequency of balance wheel:
3 Hz (= 21,600 vibrations/hour)

Functions
Tourbillon
Hours
Minutes

Case
41 mm diameter
18-carat pink gold case
Glare-proofed sapphire crystal and caseback
Water-resistant to 30 m

Dial
Laquered black inner bezel
Open-worked
18-carat pink gold hands

Strap
Hand-stitched “large square scale” black alligator strap with 18-carat pink gold folding clasp

Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet – Minute Repeater Supersonnerie

The minute repeater supersonnerie enriches the collection with a revamped high-end complication that continues to profit from the strong momentum of the minute repeater supersonnerie technology launched in 2016.

This contemporary wristwatch has the sonic power of a pocket watch. Its exceptional acoustic performance, sound quality and harmonic tone are granted by the patented gongs, case construction and striking regulator developed at the time. The performant gongs are not attached to the mainplate, but to a new device acting as soundboard, which improves sound transmission. The striking regulator – the device that sets the pace of the striking sequence of hours, quarters and minutes – is redesigned to absord shocks and eliminate unwanted noise thanks to its more flexible anchor system.

This calibre also provides a sharper tempo, as the hours and minutes chime without interruption when there is no quarter chiming sequence. Furthermore, a security function prevents the user from altering the time display while the striking mechanism is active.

The 18-carat white gold case is complemented by a smoked blue enamel dial set off by white gold hands, applied indexes and numerals, as well as an Audemars Piguet signature in enamel. The sound-wave caseback design is inspired by the watch’s exceptional acoustics.

Calibre 2953 is finished with “Côtes de Genève”, circular graining and yellow-gold-toned engravings on the caseback side, and satin-finished “traits tirés”, hand-polished chamfers, sandblasted angles, and circular graining on the dial side.

Technical details

Reference
26395BC.OO.D321CR.01

Movement
Hand-wound Manufacture calibre 2953
Total diameter: 30 mm (131/4 lignes)
Total thickness: 6 mm
Number of jewels: 32
Number of parts: 362
Minimal guaranteed power reserve: 72 h
Frequency of balance wheel: 3 Hz (= 21,600 vibrations/hour)

Functions
Minute repeater Supersonnerie
Hours
Minutes
Small seconds

Case
41 mm diameter
18-carat white gold case
Glareproofed sapphire crystal
Water-resistant to 20 m

Dial
Smoked blue enamel dial
18-carat white gold applied hour-markers and hands
Enamel transferred logo
Lacquered black inner bezel

Strap
Hand-stitched “large square scale” blue alligator strap with 18-carat white gold folding clasp

Major Design Innovations by Audemars Piguet

1917. The First Octagon

The first major innovation in design and form at Audemars Piguet begins with the birth of the wristwatch in the late 19th century. By the 1910s, during the Art Nouveau period, watchmakers at Audemars Piguet were liberated from the classical designs of the 19th century and began a path towards highly creative, geometric designs that have continued to the present day. The octagon has been found in architecture design since antiquity as well as in decorative arts and jewellery for centuries.

This diamond-set bracelet watch from 1917 is the earliest confirmed and documented octagonal-shaped wristwatch made by Audemars Piguet.

1929. Angular Geometries

The greatest acceleration of design and form at Audemars Piguet began in the 1920s, with the Art Deco era. Art Deco aesthetics are defined by their strong & angular geometric shapes and bold lines. Audemars Piguet wristwatches in the 1920s took on powerful cushion and rectangular shapes in parallel with broader Art Deco trends.

These new shapes also required new means to attach the strap or bracelet to the body of the watch, leading case makers to craft creative lugs to secure the watch on the wrist.

This unique 18-carat white gold jumping hour wristwatch from 1929 is an early example of Audemars Piguet combining geometric forms within the same case: while the dominant form is rectangular, the sides of the case are dramatically flared and tiered, becoming the actual lugs of the watch.

1936. Creative Dial

The 1930s and 1940s witnessed great creativity in regards to dial design. Cushion-shaped and rectangular wristwatches continued to be produced, yet round watches began to make their return. Produced for the Italian retailer, Astrua, and delivered in 1936, this unique chronograph wristwatch is a masterpiece of unconventional design. At 37.75 mm, it was massive for the era and ahead of its time.

 

The oversized case is accentuated by the enlarged bezel with black enamel Roman numerals. The circular motif is the central design element, repeated in the case shape, the bezel, the intricate dial and subsidiary dials. To maintain the purity of the circular geometric design aesthetic, the watch features no traditional lugs – instead, they are “hidden” as part of the case design.

1945. Contemporary Sobriety

During the post World War II boom years of the late 1940s – 1960s, Audemars Piguet entered a “Golden Age” of creative and technical watch design. Just as the War came to an end in 1945, Audemars Piguet sold this unique platinum minute repeater wristwatch with a contemporary design language consistent throughout.

 

The effect is created by a few key elements that complement one another. The bezel is incredibly thin, almost becoming invisible. The subtlety of the bezel was created to showcase the stunning silvered dial with applied alternating Arabic numerals and hour-markers that are precisely set at specific angles. The distinct lugs are proportionally large for the case and designed with strong geometric facets, creating a complex polygonal design. This specific case form housed other mechanisms during the 1940s, yet this was the only minute repeater produced in the style.

1961. Juxtaposed Geometries

Until 1951, all watches at Audemars Piguet had been made as unique creations. However, even with the introduction of “models” at this time, experimentation in design and form continued to flourish. Everything that had been discovered during the first half of the century was built upon with even greater creative liberty and expression during the 1950s and 1960s, much like the art, music and architecture of the era.

Geometric shapes in wristwatch design knew no boundary during this period. Sold in 1961, this model juxtaposes the rectangle, the circle and the square with overt intentionality. The 18-carat white gold case is rectangular in form, yet cut at the top and bottom to accentuate the thin circular bezel and dial. The circular dial is designed with a printed square that provides a frame for the rectangular hour-markers. This explorative combination of geometric forms gives a highly esoteric result.

1962. Asymmetry

The late 1950s and 1960s also witnessed the birth of wildly creative asymmetrical watches that pushed the boundaries further than ever. These horological creations would have been unimaginable only a decade prior.

This eccentric watch from 1962 is exemplary of unconventional design at Audemars Piguet with its circular-type asymmetrical case form that spreads outwards in both directions, creating an optical effect never seen before on a wristwatch.

The dial design is both highly complementary and equally rule-shattering with a flared design and two-tone finish that works in harmony with the case. The inclusion of a centre seconds hand creates yet another layer of visual experience for the person wearing the watch.

1961, Asymmetrical Watch – Heritage Collection, Inv. 302

1972. A Body of Steel

Highly unconventional and entirely unexpected, the Royal Oak, designed by Gérald Genta and first introduced in 1972, is a design milestone in the history of 20th century watches. In direct continuity of the 1950s and 1960s, the watch is a canvas for eccentric creativity in form and powerful design codes that had been long explored at Audemars Piguet.

The large octagonal bezel with hexagonal screws, the tonneau-shaped case, the circular dial with engine-turned tapisserie dial, and the exquisite bracelet with highly faceted links that descend in size are all central to its iconic design and the distinct impression it leaves. Originally produced in stainless steel, the choice of metal was also central to its design as the material had never been hand-finished with such levels of detail. While often referred to as the “first luxury sports watch,” it changed the way people wore their watches and sent the watchmaking industry into a new direction.

2002. Unapologetically Futuristic

As more advanced technologies including CNC and CAD entered the picture, Audemars Piguet leveraged these tools while always keeping the focus on traditional watchmaking. CNC (Computer Numerical Control) is a system by which metals, ceramic and other materials can be precisely cut to exact specifications. CAD (Computer Aided Design) files provide the blueprint and instructions for the CNC process. It was this balance of high technology and deep tradition that paved the way for the Royal Oak Concept in 2002 – another design milestone that established an entirely new aesthetic for 21st century watchmaking.

The first Concept was an unapologetic futuristic watch conveying precision and complexity. The traditional Royal Oak case is still perceptible, yet the form language has evolved. Its Alacrite case and titanium bezel are also innovative. There is no traditional dial – instead the movement is on full display as part of the design aesthetic. The Royal Oak Concept opened the doors to a complete new category of watches unseen before.

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