Limited to 200 pieces only, Audemars Piguet commemorates their 17th year of sponsorship of the QEII Cup in Hong Kong with a titanium Royal Oak Chronograph. The QEII Cup has been there since 1975 already and was established because of the visit of Queen Elizabeth II in that year to Hong Kong. Since 1999, Audemars Piguet is the title sponsor of this race that’s being held during spring season.
I am not going to bore you with all kinds of details about the QEII Cup, as I assume you are only interested in learning about the special Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Chronograph QEII Cup timepiece that the manufacture from Le Brassus just introduced.
Based on their current Royal Oak Chronograph models in 41mm, reference 26320, Audemars Piguet introduces a titanium version limited to 200 pieces only. This model features the F. Piguet based column-wheel chronograph movement caliber 2385, to me a more interesting movement then the module chronograph movements of the Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph collection. That’s personal preference of course.
As always, the Royal Oak Chronograph case has a stunning brushed finish with a number of polished facets. Although titanium is light weight and very strong, it is also bound to get scratches due to normal wear. My slight concern would be how difficult and time consuming it is to get the original finish restored when scratched.
Although I don’t think this watch is really meant for use in water, it has a water resistance of 50 meters. The crown is screw-down and the pushers need to be unscrewed before you can use them.
The case back of the Royal Oak Chronograph has a commemorative engraving, stating it is the QEII Cup 2015 Royal Oak and the fact it is a limited edition. The silver-tone dial has the much appraised “Grande Tapisserie” pattern and features grey ruthenium counters and outer zone. The applied hour markers and hands are white gold and luminous. The dial looks amazing and has this monochrome ‘Panda’ appearance as you can see.
This titanium Royal Oak Chronograph comes on a rubber strap with titanium folding clasp as well as a nice grey alligator strap. It is unknown whether the watch will come with a proper tool to change the strap yourself. From experience, I know it is quite a tricky job as you need to unscrew both sides of the lug (two pins meet each other in the middle) and you surely don’t want to damage the beautifully
Audemars Piguet did a nice job on the Royal Oak Chronograph QEII Cup in my opinion and I am very curious how the titanium will look and feel in the flesh. I used to own a 39mm Royal Oak Chronograph myself and didn’t feel it was that heavy. I can only imagine how light a titanium version will be on a strap.
The reference number for this specific Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Chronograph QEII Cup is 26327TI.OO.D004CA.01. List price of this watch is set to HKD $218,000.- (~ $28,114.- USD / ~ € 25.565,- Euro).