By Gordon Henderson
Last week, Richard Mille caused a stir at the SIHH with new ways to relieve us of our hard-earned dollars. Unfortunately, if we want the Richard Mille RM-33-01, we will have to wait a little longer — as production has been delayed to 2016. As depressing as that is, it also gives us time to save dollars, Euros or Yuans for this reference which happens to be a unique addition to the Mille family of watches.
The sporty Mille 33-01 looks to combine styling elements from both its circular and tonneau case designs. From the tonneau line, the case of the 33-01 borrows the ergonomic curvature of the case, which adds to its wearability, and from the round case designs, many of the characteristics and three-dimensional styling elements have been incorporated. The sports themed dial has the blasted and beveled Dauphine minute and hour hands that Mille is known for on many dials and the numbers are oversized and stylized. The date window offers a unique approach to what is a standard watch complication. The date wheel, which can be seen around the edge of the dial, rotates around the face of the watch and the date is displayed via a white box at the 7 o’clock position. Additionally, the skeletonized dial, at 45.70 mm allows for legibility and a clear view of the movement and 3D architecture.
The RM 33-01 is powered by the RMXP3 calibre and features a number of technical and aesthetic features of note. The micro rotor is manufactured out of platinum and placed off center. The bridges, along with most of the movement parts, are constructed out of grade 5 titanium. Known as the workhorse alloy of the titanium industry, this already strong metal undergoes significant treatments for this watch. It is wet sandblasted, electroplasma treated, the surfaces are microblasted and satin finished, and the anglage worked entirely by hand. The piece further undergoes a series of stress tests including impact, temperature variations and a host of uncomfortable tests to ensure that the watch won’t miss a beat while you perfect your swing on the golf course or hit your wrist against the wall of the doorway into your corner office. The 33-01 handles it.The 14 grade 5 titanium spline screws ensure that the case is water resistant to 30 meters. RM 33-01 is expected to be available in either titanium, red gold or white gold on a rubber strap. While price has not been finalized, those that love the brand will love the upcoming release.
For women, Mille has pulled out all the stops with his new RM 19-02 Tourbillon Fleur — a stunning work of technology, art and haute joaillerie. Check out our sister site, WatchSeduction, for details on that piece.