Richard Mille: The RM 30-01 collection unites precision with craftsmanship

Richard Mille’s RM 30-01 collection unites ergonomics, pure lines, exceptional finishes and state-of-the-art materials in a stunning display of precision and craftsmanship

A Richard Mille watch is always greater than the sum of its parts. Case in point: the RM 30-01 Automatic with Declutchable Rotor, created by a team of talents who worked together like an orchestra brilliantly led by a virtuoso conductor. Each of its components, from the declutchable, variable-geometry rotor and function selector to the power-reserve indicator, contributes to its superlative design while the level of finishing achieved underscores the watchmakers’ pursuit of perfect craftsmanship and desire to continually push back technical limits.

Like its predecessors, it benefits from the aesthetic solutions and technical advances that are adopted with each new design. But far from forgetting its roots, the RM 30-01 is strengthening them through a reinterpreted skeletonised design that helps to establish graphic balance. The grade 5 titanium bridges and baseplate create perspective and depth through the multiplication of their parallel segments The curves of the previous models have been eliminated to allow a diamond-based geometry to emerge that adds dynamic energy to the display of information.

The sculptural tonneau-shaped case, whose taut lines and complex geometry make it one of the most difficult to develop and manufacture in the entire watchmaking industry, is water resistant to 50 metres, ensured by 2 Nitrile O-ring seals. It is assembled with 20 spline screws in grade 5 titanium and abrasion-resistant washers in 316L stainless steel, and comes in three variations. One features a case back and bezel in 5N red gold teamed with a case middle in grade 5 titanium, while another is entirely machined in this hypoallergenic material, which boasts exceptional resistance to corrosion and shocks. Both of these versions are beautifully enhanced with the same finishes (satin-finished, polished bevels, etc.).

The latest addition to the collection, meanwhile, uses Alumina Toughened Zirconia, or ATZ, made from tubes of aluminium oxide powder injected at a pressure of nearly 2,000 bars. This intense pressure injection process boosts the material’s stiffness by 30% while virtually eliminating its porosity. ATZ also stands out for its exceptional scratch resistance, rated at 1,400 Vickers, and its colour stability. Crafting the RM 30-01’s bezels also demands extensive and challenging machining using diamond tools due to their intricate, curved lines and satin finish.

The design and execution of the RM 30-01 demonstrate a holistic approach to conception of the movement, case and dial. As a result, everything has been constructed according to extremely rigorous specifications, in the manner of the analytical engineering methods used in the design of Formula 1 racing cars, where the chassis and the engine are developed in complete harmony. For example, a casing ring is no longer used, and the movement is mounted on chassis mounting rubbers (ISO SW) fixed by grade 5 titanium screws. Features such as these provide evidence of uncompromising workmanship.

A true synthesis of the identity of its collections, the RM 30-01 stays true to Richard Mille’s key values: ergonomics, pure lines and exceptional finishes. It epitomises not only the quintessence of the brand, but also the many aesthetic adventures experienced by Richard Mille for over 20 years.

Also see: Johnathan Chan’s watch collection

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