Audemars Piguet - The Royal Oak 50th Geneva Friday, May 6, 2022 | Phillips

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    • Manufacturer: Audemars Piguet
      Year: 1975
      Reference No: 5402ST
      Movement No: 158'184
      Case No: 99390.B1005 further stamped 1299 RE
      Model Name: Royal Oak "Chaumet" "B Series"
      Material: Stainless steel
      Calibre: Automatic, cal 2121, 36 jewels
      Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Audemars Piguet bracelet, max length 175mm
      Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Audemars Piguet deployant clasp
      Dimensions: 39mm Diameter
      Signed: Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed
      Accessories: Accompanied by Audemars Piguet Certificate of Authenticity and Exclusivity and Chaumet Documentary file confirming the order number 1299 RE on December 3, 1975. Further accompanied by Audemars Piguet and Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo co-signed Royal Oak 50th Anniversary Attestation.

    • Catalogue Essay

      Launched in 1972, the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak was the world’s first stainless steel luxury sports watch with a fully integrated bracelet. Designed overnight in response to an urgent request for an ‘unprecedented steel watch’, it was at the same time the most expensive stainless steel watch ever made. The brand sought famed designer Gérald Genta, who developed a brilliantly engineered, monobloc case, with a distinctively maritime feel, featuring an octagonal bezel secured by eight hexagonal, white gold screws, and a dial with tapisserie motif. While today the Royal Oak is a legend, at the beginning it was more than a bet, it was a true visionary revolution, the first appearance of what is today's most successful kind of wristwatch: the luxury sports watch in steel.

      The Royal Oak model reference 5402ST has been produced in four different batches: A, B, C and D with small design details that made each slightly different.

      The reference 5402 remained in the Audemars Piguet Catalogues for 25 years and was produced in 6,050 examples over the different series.

      Double signed timepieces are a rarity highly cherished by collectors. On an intellectual level, they open a doorway into the largely discontinued practice of co-signing (with notable exceptions) which was obviously a marketing effort from before the field of horological "marketing" was even properly coded. On a collectible level, the conjunction of two brands on the same dial is invaluable to the connoisseur. Co-signing is a dwindling practice, and even back in the days when it was more mainstream only a fraction of a brand's production would be co-signed. If that is true for any brand, it is especially applicable to Audemars Piguet. In fact, only a handful of co-signed Royal Oak examples are known. The present piece, for example, is one of only 3 known Chaumet-signed reference 5402. Intriguingly, the caseback bears an additional number beyond the serial number: 1299RE. Chaumet's archives shed ample light on the subject, as it confirms that this co-signed watch was a special order numbered indeed "1299RE", and goes on to specify that this number was engraved on the back. Offered in spectacular condition, the present piece is an unmissable opportunity for those looking for the rarest variations of vintage Royal Oak timepieces.

    • Artist Biography

      Audemars Piguet

      Swiss • 1881

      A specialist in the manufacture of complications since it was established in 1881, Audemars Piguet never ceases to impress with a rich history of creating bold, even audacious, timepieces underpinned by traditional watchmaking at its finest. This Le Brassus-based Swiss manufacturer is one of only two major manufacturers still owned by the founding family. Since its earliest days, AP is considered a leader in the field of minute repeaters and grande complication pocket and wristwatches. The brand is devoted to preserving the history of watchmaking in the Vallée de Joux, showcased at their superb museum in Le Brassus.

      Today, the brand is best known for its Royal Oak models, a revolutionary luxury sports watch launched in 1972. Other key models include early minute repeating wristwatches, vintage chronograph wristwatches, such as the oversized reference 5020, perpetual calendar watches and the Royal Oak Offshore, first introduced in 1993.

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Ref. 5402ST
An early stainless steel wristwatch with date and bracelet, retailed by Chaumet, one of 3 known examples

39mm Diameter
Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed

Full Cataloguing

CHF80,000 - 160,000 

Sold for CHF245,700

Contact Specialist

Alexandre Ghotbi

Head of Watches, Continental Europe and the Middle East

+41 22 317 81 81


Virginie Liatard-Roessli
Head of Sale, Specialist
+41 76 338 91 03

The Royal Oak 50th

Geneva Auction 6 May 2022