The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore collection, was launched in 1992 to commemorate 20 years of the Royal Oak, AP's most renowned and iconic watch. The Offshore, made in 42mm became the largest luxury watch and offered customers a sportier and comfier rendition of the Royal Oak.
One of our team members had the privilege of wearing and reviewing the Royal Oak Offshore reference 26420TI.OO.A027CA.01 for a week, and heres what he had to say:
The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore is truly one of the more comfortable luxury sports watches around. I was surprised by how light it felt despite its size, as I was skeptical about the watch feeling top heavy due to the general design of the watch.
I think this is due to this specific AP Offshore being made in Titanium, which is a lot lighter than steel, making it extremely wearable especially as the weather has gotten hotter (at last)!
One thing i will vouch for is the strap. I came in with a somewhat prejudiced position, having preconceived notions that nothing could beat the Oysterflex bracelet by Rolex, as that is made so elaborately and with extreme comfortability. While that opinion still somewhat stands, there is no doubt that the strap is comfortable and the weight is good, so i had no complaints wearing it for long hauls in and around London.
Aesthetics and Function
Now heres the nitty gritty part of the watch. The Audemars Piguet Offshore Divers undoubtedly pack a mighty punch in terms of wrist presence. While it is only 43mm the watch definitely wears bigger and isn't for the folk that bears the small wrist. Its also 14.3mm thick which i definitely noticed as i tried to caution my way out of banging it on any protruding surfaces.
Saying this, the watch gave me a feeling of no other. Despite its oversized nature and sporty looks, it is still a broodingly handsome watch. Theres no Royal Oak DNA lost, and it is definitely recognisable, which is something I want for paying upwards of £40,000 on a watch with a rubber strap.
The aqua blue dial with the renowned mega tapisserie finish made with utmost precision is definitely captivating to look at, but it also induces a feeling of enjoyment. The hits of red on the seconds hand and sub-dials give a pleasant contrast and really makes it exciting to wear, which is something you might not get with the traditional Royal Oak's.
Especially for the summer months, this watch can be dressed up or down which is always a plus, and the look of the watch is always a conversation starter. When people ask "Well why not spend a little more and get a Royal Oak?" they are usually coming from a position of popularity. The AP Offshore offers the alternative, the unique, the different from the norm, and it definitely looks good while doing so.
The new in-house movement is also to be commended, with the new Caliber 4401 flyback chronograph developing on the previous iteration, stopping the hands from jumping on the activation of the stop, start or reset functions when using the chronograph functions. The movement itself is visible from the open case back, which is another beautiful touch to this watch.
For the amount of watch, presence, and prestige you get, this watch is definitely a standout selection. In a category of watches with not many competitors, such as the Rolex Daytona or Patek nautilus, not only is this competitively priced but has also proven to hold its value quite well.