Introducing the RM 72-01 Automatic Winding Flyback Chronograph Le Mans Classic, a timepiece that embodies the spirit of motorsports and racing. This watch, limited to just 150 pieces, commemorates the 100-year legacy of the iconic 24 Hours of Le Mans race.
The RM 72-01 Le Mans Classic mirrors the high-performance nature of the race cars that compete on the 13.626-kilometer Le Mans circuit. The watch features a double lap of the dial, symbolizing the endurance and speed of the race.
The patented flyback chronograph mechanism by Richard Mille sets this watch apart. It distributes the torque generated across the chronograph’s various counters, disconnecting the minutes and hours from the chronograph’s seconds wheel. This design enhances the chronograph’s performance, drawing power directly from the barrel to fuel the three counters.
The chronograph train receives this increased energy via a coupling system comprising two oscillating pinions mounted on rockers. These control the start, stop, flyback, and reset functions. The rockers are activated by a 6-column wheel, optimizing the simultaneity of actions and ensuring the longevity of the settings.
The watch features a subtle nod to the traditional start time of the endurance race, with the number 16 underlined in red on the hour counter. A function indicator, akin to a car’s gearbox, identifies the winding, neutral, and handsetting positions as the crown is pulled out.
The RM 72-01 Le Mans Classic showcases a comprehensive approach to the design of the movement, case, and dial. The movement is mounted on chassis mounting rubbers (ISO SW) fixed by titanium screws, eliminating the need for a casing ring. This highlights the commitment to high-quality craftsmanship.
The case is crafted from Quartz TPT®, consisting of over 600 layers of parallel filaments obtained from separating silica threads. These layers, no thicker than 45 microns, are saturated in a specially developed white or green resin and woven on a special machine. The case undergoes heating and pressurization before machining, revealing the unique Quartz TPT® layers.
Quartz fibres are typically used for high-performance applications due to their resistance to high temperatures, strength, and transparency to electromagnetic waves. The tripartite case is water-resistant to 30 meters, ensured by three Nitrile O-ring seals. It is assembled using 20 grade 5 titanium spline screws and abrasion-resistant washers in 316L stainless steel.