The timepiece complies with the NIHS 92-11 (ISO6425) standard for professional-grade divers’ watches, and its design is geared toward underwater legibility and functionality. Its black dial, which features Audemars Piguet’s familiar “Méga Tapisserie” motif, is fitted with a luminescent orange hand matching the diving scale on the rotating inner bezel ring and the orange zone between the 12 and 3 o’clock positions. The watch’s unusual dive-time pre-selection device, positioned inside the case, is more complex to make than the more traditional, exterior rotating bezel, and offers other advantages to divers that the latter type cannot. Protected under the crystal from shocks and agents such as water, salt, and sand, which could jam an exterior bezel, this mechanism, controlled by a watertight crown at 10 o’clock, reduces the parallax error and also enhances safety: once the crown has been screwed back in, the dive time cannot be accidentally changed. Both the inner bezel and the winding crown can be operated underwater thanks to a system of watertight gaskets.
The back of the high-tech case is made of titanium and fitted with a sapphire window, which is secured to the ceramic case middle by screws. Visible though the caseback window is the movement, Audemars Piguet’s automatic Caliber 3120, which has a a 22k gold rotor, a balance frequency of 21,600 vph and a power reserve of 60 hours. The embellishments and decorations on the movement include diamond-pland levels on the bridges and reversed circular côtes de Genève pattern on the bridge pavements. The black rubber strap with titanium pin buckle enables the wearer to adjust the strap easily, even while wearing over a diving suit.
The new Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Diver will be available this summer, at a retail price of $21,800.