The new self-winding Audemars Piguet Jules Audemars Dual Time (Ref. 263800R.OO.0002CR.O1) finds another good use for the gorgeous base caliber designed by Jaeger-LeCoultre, their sister brand that, too, is owned by the very same Richemont Group.
The AP Caliber 2392/2846 that beats inside the rose-gold case is based on the well-known JLC 889 base movement designed and produced by Jaeger-LeCoultre. Widely used by Richemont’s premium brands (Vacheron Constantin, for example, uses it under the disguise of “VC caliber 1226” to animate their stately Overseas Gray Automatic three-hander,) the base caliber accepts add-on modules well and can be offered in just about any form starting from simple three-hander with date, through chronograph to, like in this particular case, a dual-timer with rudimentary calendar and a power reserve display.
The automatic movement is 29.92 mm in diameter and, even when equipped with a complication module (they don’t state this explicitly, but, as far as I understand, the module is made by Dubois Depraz exclusively for the brand) is only 4.90 mm in height, so it didn’t take Audemars Piguet too much effort squeezing it into a 41.00 mm rose gold case, which is just 9.25 millimeters thick.
The Dual Time‘s black dial sports Jules Audemars’ signature style, including the usual sunburst pattern that not only gives the gadget’s face extra depth but also serves as a higher-contrast background for its leaf-shaped hour and minute hands and long thin hour indexes that, as the case itself, appear to be crafted from 18-karat rose gold alloy and finely polished.
With its four sub-dials (a date between 2 and 3 o’clock, a 12-hour GMT display at 6 o’clock, a day/night indicator between 7 and 8 o’clock and a power reserve gauge at 9 o’clock,) the Dual Time’s face looks slightly overcrowded, but that’s a common problem for this type of timekeepers. To overcome this problem, one would have to use a second time-zone indicator with a 24-hour scale while removing the unnecessary day/night sub-dial altogether, but that was probably not acceptable for the company.
So, even if some of us are ready to report this as a bug, I am pretty sure that this is a case of “WAD” (Works As Designed) for the team that is responsible for the piece.
Anyway, it is still a nice timepiece that, thanks for its relatively compact size of just 41 millimeters in diameter and slightly over 9 millimeters thick will fit just about any wrist and just about any type of formal attire, but will certainly make a huge breach in just about any wallet, too, if you are not a CEO of a multinational company or, perhaps, certain Mark Zuckerberg (if he would ever be willing to buy such a fine example of conspicuous consumption.)
Photos: Audemars Piguet
WWR preliminary verdict
Build quality: 5/5
Overall Legibility: 4/5
Nighttime Legibility: 2/5
Value for money: 4/5
Audemars Piguet Jules Audemars Dual Time in Rose Gold (Ref. 263800R.OO.0002CR.O1) specification
Price: $34,500 (MSRP)
Movement: Automatic, AP Caliber 2329/2846, JLC 889 base movement, 33 jewels, 28,800 vph, 261 parts, 29.92 mm in diameter, 4.90 mm in height, Swiss Made
Functions: Hours, minutes, GMT, date, power reserve indicator
Power reserve: 38 hours
Case: 18-karat Rose gold
Size: 41.00 mm
Case height: 9.25 mm
Hands: Rose gold
Water resistance: 20 meters
Strap: Hand-sewn black alligator leather with large square scales, PA folding clasp in 18-karat rose gold
Crystal: Sapphire, anti-reflective
Back: Solid, engraved with “Jules Audemars” inscription and serial number