Audemars Piguet Quantieme Perpetuel 5548BCSold
Audemars Piguet Quantieme Perpetuel 5548BC
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The ref. 5548 is the very first execution of this pivotal model and we have managed to get a very early one in whitegold.
As the watch industry was buckling under the weight of the quartz crisis, Audemars Piguet introduced the world’s thinnest automatic movement with a perpetual calendar complication. The resulting line of precious metal dress watches was in production from 1978 until the early 1990s and contained watches in different precious metals and with various dial options, often produced in small numbers.
This B-serial dates back to 1980 and is made in white gold. Only 80 pieces in total of the 5548 and its successor, the 25548, have been made in white gold. This rare piece also still features its original "Swiss only" dial. These early dials are made with white glossy lacquer and oftentimes have fine hairlines that develop on the recessed sub-dials over time. However, the surface on this dial remains pristine, a rarity in and of itself. As these dials were often replaced by later service dials with “Swiss Made”, a 5548 with an original dial (especially one that is not cracked) is highly desirable.
The significance of the automatic perpetual calendar line is twofold. For one, it signaled Audemars Piguet’s return to its roots as a maker of high complications. Quite something at a time when the watch industry was experiencing a life-threatening crisis. Second, these watches, along with the recently introduced Royal Oak, allowed the company to grow rapidly while most of its competitors struggled or went under.
The ‘Quantième Perpétuel line is powered by Audemars Piguet’s caliber 2120/2800 automatic movement, which is derived from Jaeger Lecoultre’s legendary ultra-thin caliber 920 base movement. This base movement was of course used, among others, in AP’s Royal Oak, Patek’s Nautilus, and Vacheron Constantin’s 222. For the QP line, Audemars Piguet reworked the 920 to include a perpetual calendar complication as well as a 21K yellow gold rotor.
The watch has just returned from a full service at our trusted Audemars Piguet service center and comes with the corresponding service papers and an extract of the Audemars Piguet archives.