Audemars Piguet Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet Selfwinding 38 mmOctober 16, 2023
Three of the biggest trends in watchmaking today are more compact case sizes, textured, colourful dials and deliberate gender-free positioning. Audemars Piguet jumps on the bandwagon and produces its time-and-date Audemars Piguet Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet Selfwinding 38 mm in a new 38mm case size to accommodate “slimmer wrists” of both sexes and decks out the vibrant purple and elegant ivory dials with a richly embossed pattern.
The new 38mm Code 11.59 watches are presented in 18k pink gold cases and designed to sit alongside the collection’s current 41mm and 42mm models – the latter being only seen on the Universelle Ultra-Complication. Not only is the 38mm case more compact, but it is also slimmer in height due to the incorporation of the automatic calibre 5900. A comparable time-and-date Code 11.59 model in 41mm, for example, has a thickness of 10.7mm, while the new 38mm diameter comes in at 9.6mm. Like other Audemars Piguet Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet Selfwinding 38 mm family members, the multifaceted case architecture, with its highly stylised lugs, slim bezel and octagonal case middle, is highlighted with satin-brushed surfaces and brightly polished bevels. The water-resistance rating remains 30m, and the crown, benefitting from a recent design evolution, features more pronounced indentations.
In addition to the more compact and slim case size, the novelty here is the striking pattern decorating the dial. First seen on board the Audemars Piguet Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet Selfwinding 38 mm time-and-date and chronograph models in 41mm steel cases, the lively pattern on the dial is composed of a series of concentric circles punctuated with tiny holes. Although they are obtained by stamping, the original design was made by Swiss guilloché craftsman Yann von Kaenel, who engine-turned the stamps by hand with a series of waves that radiate from the centre. Almost like a basketweave, the pattern creates a mesmerising effect.
The intense purple and elegant ivory dials are obtained with a Physical Vapour Deposition (PVD), maximising the play of light and enhancing the depth of the embossed pattern.
However, unlike the 41mm time-and-date Audemars Piguet Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet Selfwinding 38 mm with a similar textured dial, the new 38mm models eschew the sportier elements found on the larger versions. The indices are crafted in pink gold, faceted and applied to the dial, but they are not treated with luminescent material. Another difference between the 41mm and 38mm is the simplified minutes track with simple minute markers on the inner flange and Arabic numerals spaced at 5-minute intervals on the snailed top. The partially openworked hour and minute hands, also crafted in pink gold, have a touch of luminescence at their tips. The date window at 3 o’clock flaunts an elegant bevelled pink gold frame and uses the same colour as the dial for the background. Fitted with alligator straps that match the colour of the dial and an 18k pink gold pin buckle, the watches can also be paired with ivory or purple embossed rubber straps available in Audemars Piguet boutiques. Introduced inside certain 37mm Royal Oak references, the calibre 5900 has a slim height of 4mm, beats at a frequency of 4Hz and delivers a 60-hour power reserve. The movement is not in-house and is made for AP by Vaucher. Visible through the sapphire caseback, the movement is powered by a 22k pink gold rotor and features refined finishings such as polished angles, vertical satin brushing, Geneva waves, circular graining and bevelling.