Tourbillon and split-seconds chronograph.
With the development of complications, the RM 50 is the ultimate example of Richard Mille, combining a tourbillon and a split-seconds chronograph. Inherited from 2003’s RM008 (one of the brand’s foundational models), this top-of-the-line complication has now received a new livery for Finnish Formula 1 driver Kimi Raikkönen (for the Alfa Romeo team).
Introduced at the start of the 2019 Singapore Grand Prix, the RM 50-04 Tourbillon Split-Seconds Chronograph Kimi Raikkönen is bulky, lightweight and complex in a red, white and black colour combination, identical to the livery on the race car Alfa Romeo C38 One Formula One.
While it has tons of detail and color, the dial is actually pretty easy to decipher.
The two chronograph subdials are at six o’clock and nine o’clock. The sector indicator at 11 o’clock is the power reserve, and the torque indicator is mirrored to the right. This indicates the air volume of the mainspring, ideally between 53Nmm and 65Nmm; “Nmm” is an abbreviation for Newton Millimeter. At three o’clock is the power reserve indicator.
Made from a variety of lightweight carbon composite materials, the case is large, like other top Richard Mille wholesale complications – 44.5mm in diameter and 16.1mm in height. The front and rear panels are white Quartz TPT and the middle is Carbon TPT.
Both composites are manufactured by Swiss lightweight composite specialist North Thin Ply Technology (NTPT), Richard Mille’s preferred material supplier. The composite is made from laminated carbon fiber layers, which are then put into a liquid polymer and baked in an autoclave, an oven that cooks the material at high pressure and high temperature to set it.
Mechanically, the new watch is identical to the 2017 RM 50-03 McLaren F1, with the same hand-wound movement inside. Like most complex Richard Mille movements, the RM 50-03 is manufactured by Renaud & Papi, the Audemars Piguet Manufacture.
Like the case, the movement relies on modern materials for lightness: the bridges and base plate are titanium, while some chronograph bridges are carbon composite. The large X-shaped bridges that hold the movement to the strap are also carbon composite.
Despite the modern materials and styling, the movement is traditional in construction, with two column wheels – one for the chronograph and the other for the split-seconds – and a pair of split-second wheels clip.
Material: Carbon Composite
Water resistance: 50m
Movement: RM 50-04
Functions: Time, Tourbillon, Split-Seconds Chronograph, Power Reserve Display, Torque and Crown Function Indicator Winding
: Manual winding
Frequency: 21,600 beats/hour or 3 Hz
Power reserve: 70 hours
Strap: Synthetic Fiber