Skeletonised automatic movement with hours, minutes, seconds, flyback chronograph, 60-minute countdown timer at 9 o’clock, 12-hour totaliser, oversize date, month indicator and variable-geometry rotor.
Restyling is a crucial element in the lifecycle of any product. A watch has to possess vitality and be integrated into a brand’s natural stylistic development. A fixture of the Richard Mille collection since 2007, the RM 011 retired at the height of its glory to make way for the RM 11-03 Automatic Flyback Chronograph. Since the brand’s debut, Richard Mille watches have distilled performance in an unparalleled range of areas. The guiding principle for Richard Mille behind the RM 11-03 was to imbue the new automatic RMAC1 calibre with a 3D quality and to bring its complexity visually to the fore.
The glossy bevelled rims marked with intermediate times surrounding the coloured counters of the flyback chronograph and seconds window confer depth. This sense of volume is further accentuated by an upper bridge in satin-brushed grade 5 titanium that contrasts with the movement, also crafted from titanium but with a PVD coating.
This creates a visual itinerary that sweeps around the annual calendar with its oversize date, as well as the 12-hour counter and countdown function of the flyback chronograph.
The maze continues on the back of the calibre with a satin-brushed PVD-treated lower bridge that highlights the double barrel mechanism and the modern lines of our new variable-geometry rotor in grade 5 titanium, inspired by the aerodynamic appendages seen in Formula 1.
Performance is also showcased, thanks to the RMAC3 automatic calibre. The entire flyback chronograph movement is designed for optimal rigidity and high-performance functioning of its gear trains thanks to the grade 5 titanium employed on the baseplate and bridges. Its two barrels, mounted side by side, ensure stable coupling while providing a power reserve of around 55 hours. The 4 Hz free sprung balance is highly resistant to shocks and can be tuned more precisely than a traditional balance wheel.
The tripartite tonneau case has also been reworked by the designers, who have modernised its lines without denaturing the watch, lending it a sportier, more dynamic character. Skilled workmanship and protracted machining times that can scarcely be believed are required to achieve the level of ergonomics and finishing that this case exhibits.
As always with Richard Mille, the entire mechanism can be admired through an anti-reflective coated sapphire crystal that reveals the calibre.