The RM 65-01 Automatic Split Seconds Chronograph is the most complex timepiece ever to leave the Richard Mille workshop. Developed in partnership with the brand’s go-to movement specialist, Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier, a sister company of Parmigiani, the watch features caliber RMAC4, the first automatic caliber in the Richard Mille family. The design takes inspiration from the Vaucher VMF 6710 and took about six years of R&D to create.
As with most Richard Mille watches, the RM 65-01 has a lot going on, both visually and technically. The bezel measures 44.5 mm in width, 50 mm in length, and just over 16 mm in height, with casing available in two variants: Carbon TPT and Red Gold with Carbon TPT, both of which help make the watch comfortable despite its size.
The carbon composite case components are made by Swiss composite specialist North Thin Ply Technology (NTPT), Richard Mille’s thin-ply carbon-composite supplier since 2018. The baseplate and the bridges are crafted of grade-5 titanium, a biocompatible, highly corrosion-resistant, and remarkably rigid alloy, which enables the gear train to function effortlessly.
The dial of the watch has a color-coded display: yellow indicating hours, minutes, and seconds at 6 o’clock; orange for chronograph displays; red for winding; green displays the date; and blue for split-seconds.
RM 65-01’s caliber RMAC4 consists of a six-column wheel architecture and vertical coupling, ensuring optimized simultaneous movement, maximal function locking, and greater adjustment durability. It boasts a high-frequency balance (5 Hz or 36,000 vibrations per hour) with an impressive 60 hours of power reserve. The automatic caliber uses a newly designed variable geometry to optimize the rotor’s winding motion, which helps the rotor adapt to the user’s activity level. The RM 65-01 can be wound with the crown and the ‘rapid-winding’ button on the case and requires 125 presses to fully wind the mainspring.
The RM 65-01 Automatic Split Second Chronograph uses more than 600 parts, but it is remarkably not a limited-edition model. That said, the Carbon TPT version retails for $310,000, so its set of potential buyers is certainly limited.