Often mentioned in one sentence, the original Nautilus and the replica Audemars Piguet Royal Oak are very different watches when you wear them. I had the opportunity to have them both for a while and share my findings with you. Both have a serious price tag, people today are giving the same reaction when they hear the current list price as they did in the 1970s. Both list prices are approx 22.000 Euro. As the most common thing for non-watch aficionados is to ask about price of the watch you are wearing when they hear you are a fan of high-end watches, almost all of them could not believe their ears. So the original ‘1972 effect’ of the high price of a stainless steel watch is still there.
Having that said, you might be used to discounts on list prices of watches. Even though you can expect to receive a bit of discount on the Royal Oak 15202, the Nautilus is very close to retail and sometimes even over list. A waiting list at the authorized dealer goes for both models, as they have both low production numbers.When wearing the watches or looking at the watch side by side, as pictured above, you will quickly draw the conclusion that although both are designed by the same fellow, these watches are quite different from each other. Although the specifications told you other wise, the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak feels and shows a bit bigger than the Nautilus. The Patek Philippe Nautilus is a bit wider though, due to its ‘ears’ on each side.
The lunette on both watches is just stunning. Although the Patek Philippe Nautilus has a more overall polished look, the satinized parts are finished with the out most precision and care. The looks of the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak are a bit more ‘hard core’ with its white gold 8 hexagonal bolts in the octagonal bezel, but nevertheless as superb finished as the Patek Philippe Nautilus. Just different. It is up to one’s taste which look is to be preferred.
The Royal Oak’s caliber 2121 movement is only 3.05mm in height and the Patek Philippe Nautilus’s caliber 324SC movement is 3.3mm in height. Only a very small difference, although the technique behind this non-complicated movement does differ. The caliber 2121 uses a rail to host the 21 carat gold skeletonized rotor of the movement instead of the more usual ball bearing system that Patek’s caliber 324 SC uses.
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