A Fashion-Forward Approach to Time: The 1.75mm World Thinnest Watch
The Richard Mille RM UP-01 Ferrari is a remarkable achievement in micro-watchmaking, setting a new record for the world’s thinnest watch. Despite the brand’s reputation for bold designs, this watch is surprisingly understated, with a monochromatic color scheme and a slim profile of only 1.75mm, making it the world thinnest watch. This is made possible through Richard Mille’s innovative approach to distributing components across a large surface area, rather than stacking them.
However, making the world thinnest watch also presents unique challenges. The thinner the components and baseplate, the less robust the watch becomes. To address this issue, Richard Mille used grade 5 titanium for the baseplate and bridges, a particularly rigid alloy that includes aluminum and vanadium. The components were extensively tested to ensure that the world’s thinnest watch was strong enough to withstand accelerations of over 5,000 g’s.
The stability of the escapement is another challenge in micro-watchmaking, but Richard Mille overcame this through the development of a patented ultra-flat balance wheel made of titanium. The newly developed movement was also reconfigured to combine some functions, reducing the total number of components, including the winding stem. An extra flat hairspring was used to maintain a 45-hour power reserve.
The function selector, winding crown, time subdial, and balance wheel/hairspring are all displayed on the same plane on the dial, with space left over for the Ferrari’s prancing pony logo. The sapphire crystal over the hour dial and regulator was reduced to a thickness of only 2-tenths of a millimeter, demonstrating Richard Mille’s commitment to achieving the flattest possible watch.
The Richard Mille RM UP-01 Ferrari has a tonneau-shaped case, rotated in an east-west configuration so that the long end is positioned lengthwise on the wrist, and the short end rests between the knuckles. It is a limited edition of 150 pieces and comes with a hefty price tag of $1,888,000.
In conclusion, the Richard Mille RM UP-01 Ferrari is a stunning example of micro-watchmaking and innovation. Despite its slim profile, it is a robust and reliable timepiece, thanks to Richard Mille’s use of grade 5 titanium and extensive testing. The watch’s unique features, including the patented ultra-flat balance wheel and extra flat hairspring, demonstrate the brand’s commitment to pushing the boundaries of watchmaking. While it may not be affordable for everyone, the Richard Mille RM UP-01 Ferrari is undoubtedly a collector’s item and a testament to the brand’s commitment to excellence.