This watch is too light. Your brain will tell you that it should be heavier. At 47mm wide and 42mm tall, the case weighs as much as a couple of pencils. The ultra-sophisticated mechanical timepiece is only about 70 grams—a fraction of what other watches weigh. The smooth black case isn’t a kind of metal, but rather carbon—not the ubiquitously popular carbon fiber, but Audemars Piget’s specially engineered forged carbon, made of compressed tiny carbon filaments. The resulting material is much tougher than steel, yet you can barely tell you are wearing it. Plus, it doesn’t feel cold to the touch on a chilly night like metal does.
Parts on the watch that wearers operate, such as the crown, pushers, and bezel, are a deep black ceramic. They match the color of the forged carbon well, and they are also more scratch-resistant then steel. It takes a person well versed in fine watches to appreciate how the combination of such materials is akin to a delicacy. At first, the timepiece appears unassuming, though unique. The pleasing Millenary-style oval case complements the natural curves of the wrist, while construction details make themselves apparent once you handle the fine piece of craftsmanship. In fact, the watch isn’t actually unassuming, but rather so well designed it isn’t conspicuously odd to look at, even though it appears like no other timepiece out there. It’s a polished look that might not be to everyone’s taste, but it will still be universally complimented.
The Millenary Carbon One Tourbillon Chronograph watch utilizes Audemars Piguet’s in-house handmade caliber 2884 hand-wound mechanical movement with a tourbillion escapement. Further highlights include a massive 10-day power reserve surging through two mainspring barrels, a power reserve indicator, a column wheel-based 30-minute chronograph, and a dark colored construction using metals with exotic polishs and decorations. Viewing the dial is as much about reading the time as it is about admiring the movement. Sapphire crystals on the front and rear of the watch make that easy to do.
A bold look and rugged material construction don’t necessarily make for a sports watch. The Millenary Carbon One is a complex mechanical work of art, meant for horological satisfaction and an enhancement to one’s style. Water resistant to 20 meters and made of hard materials, the watch is designed to deal with your daily life. Though, with a likely price of around $200,000 (final price will be announced when it is officially released in January 2010), while wearing the watch you should make “activity” a spectator sport.