If you are a watch lover, you must know that luxury watch brands possess a fascinating history of some unbelievable technical achievements & fashion breakthroughs & Richard Mille watches are no exception. The name "Richard Mille" has been continuously making waves in the luxury watch market since it was founded just under 20 years ago.
Following this aim, it is no wonder that Richard Mille watches come with a costly price tag over $50,000 on the low end to several million dollars.
For example, the XYZ, which is currently priced at $123 at Wrist Aficionado. Believe us, that's a great price!
The timepiece puts the label's words into practice, with both reliable performance & luxury aesthetic at the forefront of the technical design.
While the Richard Mille name may be recognized for its sports sponsorships extending from Formula 1 to men's tennis, it is not only about celeb endorsement. A quick look at these luxury watches' starred photos reveal the technical expertise & sensation of style demanded for their making.
So here we will try to grasp what makes Richard Mille watches so expensive? We will take a deep dive into several aspects of this luxury watch brand, including a brief history of the brand, the core elements of a Richard Mille watch & a few Richard Mille timepieces to keep on your shortlist.
A Short Glimpse of the Richard Mille Brand’s History
Richard Mille began his career within the 1970s with Finhor, a French watchmaking firm. After the local company was acquired by Matra in 1981, Mille climbed through the ranks until he commenced managing its entire watchmaking operation, focusing on Cupillard Rieme & Yema.
Mille left Matra’s watchmaking controls a decade later to commence making timepieces for Mauboussin. This particular jewelry firm was fresh to the luxury watch market.
7 years later, Richard Mille decisively inaugurated his own brand, colluding with an established player in the watch market Audemars Piguet.
Richard had approximately 3 decades of watchmaking knowledge & experience when he began his own label.
With his technological expertise & close understanding of the luxury look, Richard Mille discharged his very first timepiece just two years after establishing his company: the RM001 in 2001, a tourbillon watch designed to bring watchmaking up to speed with the 21st century.
It's no mystery that one section of Richard Mille timepieces allure is the high profile endorsements from star personalities (like Jackie Chan & Natalie Portman) & athlete sponsoring ranging from Spanish tennis player Rafael Nadal to Formula One drivers.
Since the year 2001, the brand Richard Mille has produced dozens of editions, with the $2 million timepiece grabbing news headlines a few yrs ago. Since then, people have been wondering what makes Richard Mille watches so expensive?
Five Core Elements of a Richard Mille Watch
While the brand Richard Mille enjoys celebrity advertisements still the key to the huge price tag is in the watch's core elements: the material, the design, its movement, statement & reputation, or marketing hype.
The size & shape of a Richard Mille watch is instantly recognizable, even from a distance. Inspired by the elegant automotive designs, the aesthetic of the watches is unapologetically bold. According to the magazine Forbes, acquiring a Richard Mille timepiece is equivalent to ‘acquiring a miniature sports car for the wrist.’ As Mille himself has often said, ‘I want people who see my watches to go, “Wow”!’
It is pretty straightforward to spot a Richard Mille timepiece: if it looks like a cross inbetween a Formula 1 race car & a high-end watch, you have found one. This distinctive look has assisted in building Richard Mille as a brand.
Richard Mille watches are well-known for utilizing unique case & base plate substances, like gold fused with carbon, carbon nanotubes & toughened ceramic. The materials provide flexibility to the mix. The substances utilized are some latest leading-edge technology, even in the businesses outside of watchmaking. Not only is the substance fresh in its composition, but the strength to utilize it in watchmaking is also strange. Mille sanctifies yrs & spends millions of Swiss francs to learn about the material & include it into his watches.
Richard Mille timepieces usually possess a tourbillon, a rotating cage that causes a new level of artistic sophistication to escape. The movements are produced with a variety of unique substances as a hybrid of titanium.
Mille never did enter the classical world of Geneva stripes & perlage decorations. The movements of his watch are coated in Physical Vapor Deposition or Titalyt. The movement components are normally a hybrid of titanium with some other materials. Mille’s extremely dedicated team of watchmakers & engineers spent yrs perfecting.
In one instance, for the RM018 Boucheron, the gear train was composed of wheels created from semi-precious stone that had been placed within a heated brass surround before being fixed as the brass cooled. The research required for such innovations takes years, team work & dedication.
Reputation / Marketing Hype
It’s tough to emphasize how much worth is attached to a product due to its reputation. People pay a massive premium for Richard Mille because of its Richard Mille. That’s not a criticism, by the way. It’s a statement of fact. The man & the brand have built their reputation on making costly, avant-garde watches. No one is doing what Richard Mille is doing. And no one is doing it as consistently.
There is no dilemma. It's really a tricky business marketing model to balance, but Richard Mille has done an exceptional job of it. Staying true to the brand ethos is critical, even if everyone else thinks you’re crazy.
Also known as the ‘billionaire’s handshake,’ Richard Mille timepieces beautify wrists within the most elite circles. The label strengthens this message by signing ambassadors such as Felipe Massa, the former Formula One driver & Rafael Nadal, the tennis champion.
Mille developed the RM006 tourbillon for Massa in 2004. The watch, which weighs little more than a credit card, can resist shocks up to 500G. Massa was wearing a RM006 watch when he with his car crashed into a tire barrier ahead of the 2009 Hungary Grand Prix. Massa, the Brazilian driver, underwent severe head injuries; the timepiece emerged unscathed.
For Nadal, Mille wanted to develop a watch he could wear during matches. The Spaniard broke 5 prototypes before the RM027, which measured just 20 grams, was chosen. Nadal was wearing the timepiece when he won his very first US Open tournament & the 9th grand slam title of his career in the year 2010.
American golfer Bubba Watson wore a Richard Mille while winning the 2012 Masters tournament at Augusta National & the Jamaican sprinter Yohan Blake wore a watch in green, gold & black during the Olympic Games in London.
The Finest Watches from Richard Mille
Besides the famous $2 million RM 56–02 Tourbillon Sapphire, the Richard Mille brand has released a range of watches for considerably less money. Here are some fine Richard Mille timepieces to keep in mind while thinking of purchasing luxury watches
In a phrase, Richard Mille watches are so expensive because of the expertise, image & reputation that these elegant watches bear. Want to discover more about the Richard Mille brand & its watches or find some other luxury watches? Check out our dedicated Richard Mille Watch brand page.