Audemars Piguet upgraded the Royal Oak 15400 in 2019 with the new 15500 available in stainless steel in a blue, black, or gray dial. For 2020, they’ve added a silver-toned dial to the catalog.
The Royal Oak 15500 comes in a 41 mm x 10.4 mm stainless steel case, and all that has changed with this variation is the silvery-white “Grande Tapisserie” dial and color-matched date wheel.
Last year, Audemar Piguet gave the Royal Oak the all-new in-house caliber 4302 movement, redesigned the dial with a larger applied “AP” logo at 12, more space between the squares of the guilloché-work “Grande Tapisserie” motif dial, new Royal Oak hands including a skeletonized counter-weight on the seconds hand, shorter and wider applied white gold indices, and no marker at 3 o’clock — and that represented all the significant changes which you can read about here when it launched or take a look at our field report showing hands-on shots.
One subtle additional change for the minutes/second track, the “AUDEMARS PIGUET” under the AP logo at 12, the “SWISS MADE” marking at 6, and the date wheel — is that they all have black print as opposed to the white print of the three versions introduced last year.
The new caliber 4302, which measures 32 mm in diameter, is perfectly fitted to the 41 mm case diameter, uses a modern 4Hz frequency, has 257 components including 32 jewels, and has a 70-hour power reserve. As you would expect, the movement is immaculately finished with Geneva stripes on the bridges, perlage on the mainplate, diamond-cut bevels with polished edges, and a pink gold skeletonized oscillating weight. The new design features a bat-shaped traversing balance bridge and a free-sprung balance wheel.
Prior to the virus, Audemars Piguet would not sell their timepieces online or over the phone, at least in the United States. Due to the C19 situation, they appear to have a new policy in place where you can have a watch shipped directly to your home, according to a statement from François-Henry Bennahmias, the CEO of Audemars Piguet, in the Financial Times.
The Royal Oak 15500 Silver dial comes with an integrated stainless steel bracelet with an AP-shaped folding clasp. Water-resistance is 50 meters. (Ref. 15500ST.OO.1220ST.04)
The retail price is $20,400.