Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Selfwinding Chronograph 38mm: Malaysia Price And ReviewWritten by Leong Wong
Three millimetres might not seem like much, but in horology, skilled watchmakers know success hinges on an ability to exploit the slimmest of margins. Although only technically a cosmetic change, Audemars Piguet’s decision to revisit the Royal Oak Chronograph’s original proportions is a master stroke.
We’re all familiar with the timepiece’s current 41mm measurement and might even have come to think of it as standard, but that’s not always been the case. This only happened in 2012 in response to the growing preference for larger watches. At 38mm, the 2019 iteration is a millimetre smaller than that of the first Royal Oak Chronograph launched in 1998.
Coupled with the fact that it is only 11mm thick, and you have a decidedly wrist-friendlier option for those put off by the sheer bulk of past models and looking for something that slips discreetly under a shirt cuff. But more than that, the retooling has effectively broadened the Royal Oak Chronograph’s audience by neatly capitalising on the unisex trend of a one-size, one-shape, one-style approach for everyone.
Aesthetics-wise, there’s no mistaking this is a Royal Oak through and through. Every expected signifier is present, from the iconic octagonal bezel with exposed hexagonal screws, to ‘Grande Tapisserie’ guilloché dial and integrated steel bracelet.
The 38mm Royal Oak Chronograph has been redesigned to reinforce legibility, and comes in a choice of two cases with contrasting dials and sub-dials: the pink gold case has a silver dial and sub-dials in pink gold or grey, while the stainless steel case has a white or dark grey dial and sub-dials in blue or silver. These play off particularly well against the mix of matte satin-brushed surfaces and polished details.
It might have had a 3mm trim, but the 38mm Royal Oak Chronograph is still powered by the same manufacture movement used in its larger compatriots, the Selfwinding Calibre 2385. All in all, you couldn’t possibly wish for anything more.
|38mm in stainless steel or 18K pink gold|
|Silver- or ruthenium-toned with 'Grande Tapisserie' pattern, blue, pink gold-, silver-, or rhodium-toned counters and external zone, pink or white gold applied hour markers and hands with luminescent coating, date window|
Self-winding Calibre 2385
|Stainless steel or 18K pink gold|
|Hours, minutes, small seconds, chronograph, date|
|RM92,190 (stainless steel), RM204,060 (pink gold)|
Editor, CROWN Malaysia
A familiar face in Malaysia's horological publishing scene, Leong has been involved in lifestyle journalism since the mid-1990s. Besides watches, he takes a keen interest in cars and men's fashion.
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