‘Simply a Watch’: Audemars Piguet’s new CODE 11.59 collection

Merging avant-garde technology with over 140 years of savoir-faire, Audemars Piguet has truly pushed out engineering and craftsmanship with its stunning new collection, taking contemporary design to a new level.

On first glance they appear like simple round watches but on a closer inspection, the details are quite extraordinary.

Here, we take a look at the 13 new references – the brand’s most important launch in decades – named CODE 11.59.

Why now?

The Le Brassus brand has spent long years in the design process to finally come up with the CODE 11.59 models – and have finally delivered something quite different to its offering of The Royal Oak, which shocked the world of watches back in 1972.

And in tribute to the Oak’s controversial origins, (the world’s first steel-cased luxury sports watch) Audemars Piguet’s CEO, François-Henry Bennahmias, says his team needed to create a new collection for no reason other than to “challenge” itself.

Bennahmias says the name of the collection was chosen to reference young people and that CODE stands for CHALLENGE. OWN. DARE. EVOLVE. The reference to 11.59 is the last minute before a new day – before Audemar Piguet writes a new page for its history.

New credentials

There are 13 new references including four automatic three-hand models, four chronographs, one perpetual calendar, one minute repeater, two automatic flying tourbillon models and one tourbillon with open-worked dial, the new range represents great ambition by the brand.

Firstly, these watches are not designed for a man or woman, but simply ‘“a watch” featuring an octagonal middle case embedded within a round case, in line with the brand’s tendency to experiment with geometry.

A few of the line’s new credentials include indexes which have been painstakingly attached by hand rather than printed – a sure first for the industry.

On the metrics side, there have been vast improvements in a range of areas including the power reserve being bumped up to 70 hours and the frequency rising to 4hz.

Contemporary features

The automatic watches feature big screens, representing today’s technology including TVs and mobiles. With these designs the bezel has been almost completely killed, making it as thin as possible but posing a challenge when it came to the lugs which had to be soldered onto the case.

The glass is double curved to give the best legibility of the watch, which is available in both white and rose gold as well as black and blue dial.

With the dial lacquered up to 12 times, the logo for the first time, is in box letters, raised in gold and delicately put in place by hand. The manufacturer found that some letters were so thin they would bend when pressed on the dial, which meant each had to be calculated with height, weight and size to see if they would actually hold in place.

Calibres

Used across the 13 models are six calibres but Audemars Piguet has pushed the boat out with three new movements including calibre 4302 – a self-winding movement with seconds and date indication, featuring a dedicated 22-carat gold oscillating weight and a 70h power reserve.

Then there’s the calibre 4401 with its instant-jump date indication, an integrated column wheel chronograph and flyback function that enables the restarting of the chronograph without stopping and resetting it first.

Calibre 2950 offers a self-winding movement as well as a central rotor with a flying tourbillon and circular satin-finishing on the dial side.

If you’d like advice on finding the perfect Audemars Piguet timepiece, we offer a watch warranty with every purchase. Luxe Watches’ specialists at our Essex boutique are here to help. Contact us today on 0203 397 1596 or visit us in store.

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