Hands-On With The New Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Ceramic Diver, Now With Sapphire Caseback (Official Pricing)
The Royal Oak Offshore Diver from AP has become something of a modern classic in the realm of sport watches. The original (which Jason reviewed in detail here) was considered a worthy successor to the very first Royal Oak with the way that it paired AP’s superb in-house caliber 3120 with a beefy mega-diver’s case. It was also the first watch in 39 years to come from AP to feature the double-hash mark at 12 o’clock, subconsciously placing the new Diver in the same realm as the original Jumbo, at least to the die-hards that would even notice something like that.
After the steel-cased Diver was such a success, AP launched it in 2012 in a forged carbon case, which upped the ante in terms of luxury dive watches from a materials stand-point – Jason took it diving into the Great Blue Hole off Belize here. But, just t his week, AP announced a third iteration of the Diver – this time in matte black ceramic. The result is just awesome – for a few reasons. A) Forged Carbon, which AP arguably pioneered in the watch world, has been adopted by a handful of competitors, so it’s nice to see them pushing things forward. B) This is the first AP Diver to have a sapphire caseback. It may not sound like much, but when you own a watch housing the beautiful AP 3120, it’s sure nice to be able to look at it from time to time. And, the sapphire caseback hasn’t affected the Diver’s depth rating at all – it’s still 300m. The sapphire is housed in a titanium caseback, to boot. C) The ceramic Diver is quite a bit less expensive than the Forged Carbon Diver. It will retail at $21,800, while the Forged Carbon guy is closer to $30k.
All in all, while a ceramic case and sapphire caseback aren’t anything revolutionary, this a nice and welcomed new take on what could be described as the most serious watch-guy’s dive watch on the market. You can see more details on this new Offshore Diver right here.