Richard Mille Introduces the RM 65-01 Automatic Split-pin Print Watch
Innovative haute horlogerie brand Richard Mille has built a reputation for the use of exotic materials, intricate constructions and extremely complex movement designs. These designs have become iconic in the field of ultra-premium sports watches, helping to drive the design of a new generation of ultra-complex sports chronographs. When Richard Mille himself announced that its latest version was its most complicated timepiece ever, the statement carried considerable weight. The Richard Mille RM 65-01 Automatic Split Seconds Chronograph delivers on that promise, creating the brand's first automatic split-seconds chronograph in a technologically advanced, sophisticated packaging.
The RM 65-01 Automatic Split-Seconds Chronograph's signature tonneau-shaped case features Richard Mille's proprietary layered carbon TPT material and a mix of red gold and carbon TPT, measuring 44mm x 49.9mm. The curved shape, sandwich construction, and unique bezel screws should all be familiar to fans of the brand, but this new case stands out for its tactical use of color and some truly unorthodox features . The buttons at the 2, 4 and 10 o'clock positions are all familiar, albeit in a sculptural combination of grade 5 titanium and carbon TPT. These pushers handle the chronograph functions, the pushers at 2 o’clock and 4 o’clock perform the traditional stop/start and reset functions respectively, while the pusher at 10 o’clock handles the engagement of the split-seconds chronograph function. All three buttons are bright orange, while the rest of the buttons at 8 o'clock are almost all bright red. A titanium crown at 3 o'clock adds more color to the intricate red and green rubber strap. But what do these colors mean?
According to Richard Mille, each of these colors represents a unique function. For example, the orange element is closely associated with the chrono complication. Blue elements are related to the minutes and seconds functions, green is used for elements related to the date window, and red elements are related to the winding. While this red color is self-explanatory around the crown, its use on the pusher at 8 o'clock hints at one of the RM 65-01's innovative party pieces. This putter is a patented quick-winding mechanism capable of fully winding from an empty mainspring in just 125 pressings. The crown also hides some unique tricks. Instead of the traditional method of pulling out the crown to adjust various settings, a button in the center of the crown instantly switches functions between traditional manual winding, date adjustment and time adjustment. Water resistant to 50 meters.
The first impression of some people looking at the skeletonized dial of the Richard Mille RM 65-01 Automatic Split-Seconds Chronograph may be sensory overload. There's no denying it's a visually dense design between the complications, the skeletonization and the variety of colors used, but once the wearer has time to orient themselves, the RM 65-01 can be a legible watch. Like the case, the dial uses the same color-coding scheme, with the addition of yellow for general timing, so individual complications can be identified at a glance.
The sophisticated outer rehaut contains a full tachymeter scale, while blunt triangular protrusions hang down to create the lumen hour index. Within this bezel, nearly every available visual space is filled with some kind of message, from the skeletonized 10:30 date window to the angular Arabic hour numerals with yellow edges, the wheel-inspired chronograph sub-dials and the futuristic Sense of arrow receiver. The small retrograde subdial at 4:30 serves as an indicator of the currently selected function of the crown, colour coded according to the rest of the design. The visual details are heavily inspired by modern motorsport, with the hollowed-out central dial and chronograph sub-dial skeletonized spokes as well as the slotted PVD titanium date wheel with the look of a high-performance brake disc. Overall, it's a dial design that's likely to draw strong opinions, but in the initial images, the level of finish and space usage is undeniably impressive.
Developed by Richard Mille in collaboration with movement specialist Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier, the new RMAC4 automatic split-seconds chronograph movement powers the RM 65-01 automatic split-seconds chronograph. The RMAC4 incorporates a range of technological achievements beyond the minute-by-second complication, including an advanced variable geometry winding rotor capable of adjusting the inertia exerted by the rotor to compensate for more active or sedentary wearers. The RMAC4 also features a column wheel drive system and vertical clutch, as well as further adjustability in the form of four variable counterweights mounted directly on the Gluycdur balance for more accurate and repeatable adjustment. Beating at 36,000 bph, the movement features a mainspring barrel that rotates every six hours instead of the more common seven and a half hours to ensure a more even distribution of torque during the 60-hour power reserve. The finish on the RMAC4 is complex, angular and futuristic, with the titanium plywood and baseplate being PVD and plasma treated before sandblasting, chamfering and hand polishing.
Richard Mille RM 65-01 Automatic Split-Seconds Chronograph with a breathable integrated strap made of black rubber. Like many of the brand's straps, this one features a deep and striking cutout and flared profile on the side, allowing the cutout to flow visually and effortlessly into the recessed case side.
As the brand's most intricate, complex and dense design to date, the Richard Mille RM 65-01 Automatic Split-Seconds Chronograph is one of the most technologically advanced versions on the current sports watch market and keeps the brand on the cutting edge Design and finishing.