The oft neglected (in the US) Audemars Piguet Millenary is getting a major re-haul for 2011 with the Millenary 4101 collection. Using the same ovoid shape of case as the previous Millenary, the dial and movement are totally new and based on the very rare and high-end Audemars Piguet Millenary AP Escapement collection (see image of one below).
Those models had a special high-beat escapement and came in a few varieties with a price point usually in the $300,000 – $500,000 range. The style of the movement, as well as the look of the dial, influenced this new and very attractive collection that starts at $21,900 range for the steel.
The idea, of course, is to be able to appreciate the look of the movement each time you glance at the watch. Such appreciation is especially important because this is a finely Swiss-made Le Brassus movement produced by Audemars Piguet. I have to say that the first thing I thought when looking at this watch was just how nicely finished the movement was. Truly at a level of something two or three times the price. Specifically, I am referring to the very nicely polished bridges and plates that have a super high quality look to them. These timepieces shouldn’t have much of a problem selling themselves.
On the back of the case is an open sapphire caseback allowing you to see the engraved 22k gold rotor as well as a slew of perlage polishing. This really is a watch for the movement lover. This time around, the time display on the Millenary is actually off-centered, where as it was just a bit of an optical illusion before. The dial has a rich depth to it and you can tell that the movement was designed from the ground up to attractively fit the special oval case.