Richard Mille’s affiliation with the ace tennis player Rafael Nadal in 2010 did make a sensation, all the more because the champion adorning himself with a watch worth $500,000 or more. Why on earth should a tennis player adorn himself with a watch on the turf? There is no philosophically acceptable answer to the question. However, as a strategy of brand placing this is a superb advertising technique as the whole world watches what is on the hands of a celebrity. Recently Richard Mille has come up with Rafael Nadal’s new Richard Mille RM027 timepiece with a price tag of $690,000.
The debut of Richard Mille at the turn of the new millennium with a hitherto unheard of ethos to horology gave a new direction to watch-making. An array of adjectives like, daring, high-tech, cutting edge, futuristic, advanced, ahead of time etc, spontaneously ejaculated from the connoisseurs of timepieces, speak volumes of the success of the brand. Richard Mille watches are inspired by the same technological concepts and materials that go into the making of Formula 1 racing car. RM 001-1, the primary model, anchored the concept of a no-nonsense performer without tapestry and appendages meant only to please by peak performance always. The watches draw strength from similar machines and materials that go into making of the F1 cars and space craft.
Rafael Nadal Richard Mille RM027 is a highly complex time piece with a tourbillion type of escapement. When we consider the shock that this model is able to withstand in the battle of tennis giants we can only utter wow! Certainly the piece can stay alive after a trauma. A new system of suspension with cables keeps the watch intact, the first timepiece in the world to apply this technology. To produce a watch which weighs only 19 grams along with its strap is mind boggling. Around the wrist of the player it is only a feather.
This model has a gray look and the case is made of carbon and nanotubes. The screws and much of the metal is titanium. The skeletonized piece with a tourbillion complication has a machine that derives its power from manual winding. The niggardly limited edition of fifty, in the years to come will make it a rare heirloom in the collection of watch lovers in spite of the whopping $690.000 price tag.