Home » Introducing AP Royal Oak Selfwinding Flying Tourbillon “Dimpled Dial”

Introducing AP Royal Oak Selfwinding Flying Tourbillon “Dimpled Dial”

Photo: Audemars Piguet


With a set of gold Royal Oaks featuring distinctive dimpled dials, Audemars Piguet has made a great start to the year. They extend AP’s previous tendency of experimenting with novel and intriguing dial styling techniques rather than sticking with their iconic tiny Tapisserie motif.

The aesthetic of an equalizer/VU meter indicator was created using a similar technique in the Offshore Music Edition as in the 50th Anniversary Rainbow, which substituted the design with a broad range of valuable stones. Nevertheless, the updated dimple variants are undoubtedly the most dramatic change.


Photo: Monochrome


Generally, Royal Oak is among the most well-known timepieces ever produced and is known as the forefather of the premium sporting watch. It was created by watchmaking industry icon Gerald Genta. Numerous variations have been introduced and discontinued over the years. But periodically, Audemars Piguet is able to make a change that is so significant that it appears new and thrilling.  

The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Selfwinding Flying Tourbillon 26730, available in white and rose gold featuring dimple dials, is one instance of two novels, covertly released models. Throughout the previous years, this has repeatedly occurred: watch companies failing to announce new launches, quietly updating their portfolio online, and then pulling it all together. 



Photo: Monochrome


Both watches have a distinctive APRO flare, although the patterns have a nice slight twist. The dials, which omit the recognizable Tapisserie design embellishment in favor of a round, polished, and dimpled feel, are where this twist appears.

The only difference between the two timepieces is that one is composed of white gold while the other is rose gold, and they both feature matching dials in shades of blue and brown. Nevertheless, these dials are distinctive; the polished, circular surfaces with their raised dimples extraordinarily capture the light. It nearly seems as though they were inspired by Grand Seiko’s dial patterns, although minus the natural realm motivation. Furthermore, these APs’ brand-new dials are embellished with gold hour markings, and the iconic Flying Tourbillon is displayed in all its splendor at six o’clock.


Photo: Monochrome


In addition, the latest Royal Oak Selfwinding Flying Tourbillon variants have a case that is 10.6mm tall and 41mm in diameter. The casing features the traditional octagonal bezel on the face showcasing AP’s frosty treatment, and is offered in 18K white and rose gold. The casing is water resistant up to 50 meters and contains sapphire crystals on both the front and rear with an anti-reflective finish. 

The Movement

Each Royal Oak Selfwinding Flying Tourbillon piece practically depends on the in-house Calibre 2950. This movement was unveiled in 2019 with Code 11.59 and has since been installed in several Royal Oaks. 

Furthermore, a flying tourbillon shaft that is prominently displayed through the circular dial window controls this 270-part automated movement. When completely wound, the power reserve is 65 hours and strikes at a speed of 3Hz (21,600vph). 


Photo: Monochrome


You’ll notice that a flying tourbillon is stretched from the bottom end of the movement. Likewise, the dial side seems to hover because of the lack of a bridge, allowing an unobstructed glimpse of its spins. This contrasts with a typical tourbillon regulation, which is kept in place by an arch on either side. 


Photo: Audermars Piguet


Aside from that, the Calibre 2950 is all about contemporary solutions. It has a core rotor mechanical movement featuring 27 gems and a great power reserve. With vertical Geneva lines, beveled arches, and an open-worked wheel polished with various inner angles, along with a subtle reflection of the distinctive octagon, the ornamentation is quite striking. 


Photo: Monochrome


Lastly, these Selfwinding Flying Tourbillons 26730BC (white gold) and 26730OR (rose gold), as with most Royal Oaks, are presented on the recognizable connected bracelet in either white or rose gold. Rather than being frosted, the bracelet is polished and glossy, which makes the bezel stand out even more.

Royal Oak Selfwinding Flying Tourbillon Background 

The concept of a tourbillon circling the dial of a Royal Oak is not at all novel. However, it took the company 25 years to launch the idea because it didn’t fit during the period the variant was introduced. 

Audemars Piguet gave the tourbillon within the Royal Oak casing special attention. Besides, it was initially utilized in the RO to mark the model’s 25th anniversary in 1997 with the reference 25831. This watch was extremely limited and only made in small quantities. Additionally, this piece was the sole RO Tourbillon equipped with an automated movement till recently.


Photo: Audemars Piguet


The Royal Oak Tourbillon Extra-Thin, a hand-winding timepiece with all the line’s characteristics, was introduced in 2012. This marked the watch’s 40th anniversary and made another significant historical event (together with a slim case). Up until 2020, this was the only choice for people looking for a RO watch with simply a tourbillon.

Everything changed when Audemars Piguet launched the Royal Oak Selfwinding Flying Tourbillon 41mm in late 2020. Some of the changes were contemporary interpretations of this series, the intricacy that combines traditional design features with redesigned dials, and, most importantly, a movement that comes from the recent era added to the Code 11.59 line. 


Photo: Audemars Piguet


The piece was first introduced in steel, featuring a smoked blue dial, rose gold with a smoky grey dial (both with the “Evolutive Tapisserie” motif), and an unexpected titanium version with a subdued and lovely sandblasted dial. This was somewhat sturdy and generally more contemporary. 

Finally, the model 26530PT and its magnificent dial, a high-end, coveted platinum edition of this timepiece, were subtly added to the range for 2021, hence expanding it further.


Photo: Monochrome / Audemars Piguet ref. 26530PT


As a result, little changed technically or in terms of the specs compared to the steel, gold, or titanium versions. Ultimately, it all boils down to the colors and the materials, even with the two new Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Selfwinding Flying Tourbillon 2023 releases. 


Bottom Line

Undoubtedly, the Royal Oak is one of the most recognizable watches in the market and the most legendary timepiece produced by Audemars Piguet. With good reason—when it was introduced in 1972, the luxurious sports watch was a brand-new subgenre. Since then, for nearly 50 years, the company has derived the idea in a variety of ways, with almost every available level of complexity, along with tourbillon controllers.

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