Audemars Piguet Royal Oak 5402 'C-Series'Sold
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak 5402 'C-Series'
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The ref. 5402ST is the original Royal Oak that kicked off the luxury sports watches craze!As the story goes, Gerald Genta was tasked by Audemars Piguet to come up with an “unprecedented steel watch”. The resulting Royal Oak features the now well-known circular steel case with an octagonal bezel, eight visible screws, and an integrated steel bracelet.The first Royal Oak came out under the reference 5402 in 1972 and has been produced in four consecutive series (aptly called A, B, C, and D series). While the very first ‘A-Series’ watches are the most coveted, all versions of the ref. 5402 are highly collectible now.This C-series 5402 dates back to the late 1970s or early 1980s and features a sought after ‘AP-down’ dial with the AP-logo located just above the 6 o’clock position. These dials are found exclusively on the ‘A-Series’ watches and a few were used for ‘B-series’ and ‘C-Series’ ones. The original ‘AP-down’ dial on this 5402 features Audemars Piguet’s characteristic ‘Petite Tappisserie’ pattern and is in excellent condition.The 5402 features a 39 mm stainless steel case with a height of just 7 mm due to the use of the ultra-thin caliber 2121 automatic movement, which was later used in the Patek Philippe Nautilus as well. The case and bracelet are in excellent and original condition with some scuffs and scratches here and there.
Audemars PiguetAudemars Piguet is among the holy trinity Swiss maisons d’horlogerie alongside Patek Philippe and Vacheron Constantin. Audemars Piguet has a storied history of producing high-complication watches. It all started in 1875, when Jules Louis Audemars and Edward Auguste Piguet founded the company in the heart of the Vallée de Joux, Le Brassus, Switzerland. This pure, rough and wild landscape, with deep, dark forests, ice-cold waters and the omnipresence of rocks and hills, provided inspiration and raw materials for the Swiss watch manufacture to develop the finest watches. Since its inception, Audemars Piguet has specialized in rare, valuable and highly-complicated watches like perpetual calendars, chronographs and chiming watches. Nowadays, the emphasis of Audemars Piguet lies on the iconic Royal Oak line.Royal OakIn 1970, Audemars Piguet instructed Genta to come up with an unprecedented steel watch. As the story goes, he found inspiration whilst seeing a diver at work with an old-fashioned diver’s helmet near Lake Geneva. Staying up all night, Genta drew the design for a circular case with an angular, octagonal bezel, eight visible screws, and an integrated bracelet. The Royal Oak was presented in 1972 as the most expensive steel watch available and it caused an uproar: why was a distinguished maison d’horlogerie putting out a sports watch, let alone in such pedestrian material? Some experts even predicted that the Royal Oak would put Audemars Piguet out of business. Though it took a while to catch on, the Royal Oak is now one of the most iconic and long-lasting watch designs and has spawned an entire product line. It wouldn’t be the first time that Genta would prove a brand’s owners, customers, and industry experts wrong.
- SKU 5214
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