The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Concept Laptimer Michael Schumacher is a split-seconds chronograph made from space-age materials that was created in collaboration with the legendary Formula 1 driver.
The case has the familiar profile of the Audemars Piguet Concept series, with the large angular lugs and beefy 44mm diameter. It’s technically a split-seconds chronograph but with some extra functionality to make it easier to time racing laps. When you start the timer with the pusher at 2 o’clock, the two hands start together (one on top of the other, as with any split). If you want to use the watch like a normal flyback chronograph, you can hit the pusher at 4 o’clock to bring both hands back to zero while they start timing another lap immediately.
It gets complicated when you hit the pusher at 9 o’clock. This locks one hand where it is and returns the other to zero while starting it again immediately. This lets you read the time of the first lap while also timing a second lap. From there you can either fly back just the one hand in motion or use the pusher at 9 again to lock the moving hand and return the locked hand to zero for more timing.
The openworked dial lets you see the elaborated, skeletonized, and blacked-out movement in all its glory. There are 413 total components, three column wheels for controlling the chronograph functions, and 80 hours of power reserve.
The watch is a limited edition and is being produced in 221 examples, one for each point-winning F1 race of Schumacher’s carer. Overall these are subtle nods that will appeal to the diehards but won’t distract for those who want something less obviously tied to the racer.The Royal Oak Concept Laptimer Michael Schumacher is limited to 221 pieces and is priced at $229,500. Distribution will be limited to flagship boutique locations.
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