The world of luxury watches is small when you compare it to the budget watch market. Top luxury brands like Rolex and Richard Mille aren’t in every household because of how pricey they are. So, why are Richard Mille watches so expensive?
Richard Mille watches are so expensive because they make 5,000 per year and they feature fine materials. Many of their watches contain gold, diamonds, sapphire crystal, and diamonds. It takes months to produce most Richard Mille watches, and they have a maximum daily time variation of 8 seconds.
The cheapest Richard Mille watch costs $85,000, and their watches are likely to increase in value. This Swiss brand has only produced watches since 1999, and they continue to innovate each year. Follow along as we explore why Richard Mille watches are so expensive.
- 5 Reasons Why Richard Mille Watches Are So Expensive
- Which Richard Mille Watches Are Most Expensive?
- Are Richard Mille Watches Considered Luxury?
- Is Richard Mille as Good as Rolex?
- Do Richard Mille Watches Increase in Value?
- Summing It Up
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5 Reasons Why Richard Mille Watches Are So Expensive
Richard Mille watches are so expensive because of their distinct style and function. They are also exclusive because of the limited stock and how long it takes to produce one. Let’s take a look at what makes Richard Mille watches so expensive.
You can’t help but notice a Richard Mille watch for the unique transparency of the watch face. The mechanisms inside of a Richard Mille watch are visible and add a sense of style. Pieces such as the RM 65-01 feature bold colors such as green, red, and yellow.
Richard Mille watches appeal to a wide variety of watch enthusiasts because each line has a different style. Their tourbillion watches are the most unique in both style and performance. Some Richard Mille watches even feature elegant sculptures, such as the Tourbillion Panda RM 026-1 which features a golden panda.
Richard Mille watches are as well known for their movements and function as style. They emphasize accuracy, and each watch has a maximum daily variation of 8 seconds. Richard Mille crafts the majority of their movements in-house.
You can find Richard Mille watches that use manual winding as well as self-winding models. Many Richard Mille watches contain a tourbillion that adds value and improves performance. Watches that don’t feature a tourbillion are more likely to lose accuracy, and the addition of one increases the price.
The high cost of Richard Mille watches drives their exclusivity and rarity. Many of their watches cost over $1 million, such as the Tourbillion series. The cheapest Richard Mille watch costs $85,000 which is 10 times more than the cheapest Rolex.
Only the wealthy elite can wear Richard Mille watches due to the high cost and limited supply. Celebrities such as Margot Robbie, Cristiano Rinaldo, and Drake are known to wear Richard Mille watches. Most of Richard Mille’s premium collections are limited to less than 100 pieces which increases the cost and demand.
Richard Mille watches contain expensive materials such as gold, titanium, onyx, and sapphire crystal. They spend 1,000 hours refining their sapphire crystals so that each watch has a gorgeous case. The combination of fine sapphire crystal and tight O-rings explains why Richard Mille watches are water-resistant up to 100 feet.
Richard Mille uses several materials for their baseplates, such as carbon fused with gold and sapphire. Each piece is unique and some, such as the Tourbillion Panda RM 026-1 features diamonds. You don’t only pay for the materials, but the several months it takes to assemble them to make a watch.
Which Richard Mille Watches Are Most Expensive?
The RM 56-02 Sapphire, RM 56-01, and Panda RM 026-1 are the most expensive Richard Mille watches. Each of these watches features premium materials such as gold, sapphire crystal, and titanium. Let’s take a look at the most expensive Richard Mille watches.
Tourbillon RM 56-02 Sapphire
The Richard Mille Tourbillon RM 56-02 Sapphire costs $2 million and is their most expensive watch. Richard Mille only produced 10 of these watches which makes them as rare as they are luxurious. Every detail from the titanium baseplate to the accurate manual winding adds to the cost.
Water-resistant up to 100 feet, the Tourbillon RM 56-02 Sapphire is quite durable. The sapphire crystal watch face provides clarity and lets you see the impressive movements as they work.
Tourbillion RM 56-01
Another watch from the Tourbillion series, the RM 56-01 costs $1.85 million and exemplifies craftsmanship. This watch dates back to 2013 and there are only 5 of them in existence. The sapphire baseplate provides support and clarity because of the way it reacts to light.
Each RM 56-01 contains two tight O-rings that allow for ultimate water resistance. Richard Mille watches are known for their transparency, and this piece is a perfect example of that.
Tourbillion Panda RM 026-1
The Tourbillion Panda RM 026-1 is covered in diamonds and costs $1,592,919. Each piece comes with a panda inside of the watch face that is made out of 18k white gold. This watch is an example of Richard Mille’s craftsmanship and even features sculpted bamboo trees.
There are only 15 Panda RM 026-1 watches, and the rarity adds to its value. Even the baseplate is impressive and features black onyx which is sought-after in the luxury watch market.
Are Richard Mille Watches Considered Luxury?
Richard Mille watches are considered a luxury. The cheapest Richard Mille watch that you can currently find costs $85,000. They produce less than 5,000 watches per year which means that they are in high demand in the luxury market.
The low stock compared to the high demand limits how many people can purchase them. Richard Mille’s watches display wealth and status like any other luxury watch. However, many enthusiasts consider Richard Mille the top luxury watch brand because of the craftsmanship, distinct style, and high cost.
Is Richard Mille as Good as Rolex?
Richard Mille watches are just as good as Rolex, if not better. Both brands have Swiss history and employ classic luxury watch movements that the region is known for. Some enthusiasts consider Rolex better simply because of its resale value and legacy as a collector’s watch.
However, Richard Mille could quickly catch up to Rolex’s reputation because the brand has only been around since 1999. Rolex has been around since 1904 and has had more time to establish itself as a luxury watch brand. With that said, Richard Mille continues to innovate, use new designers, and improve their movements.
Do Richard Mille Watches Increase in Value?
Richard Mille watches hold their value and have the potential to increase in value over time. You can get an average $200,000 return on investment for a premium Richard Mille watch in good condition. It is possible to get at least a $100,000 return on investment if you keep the original packaging.
Many of their collections only feature 30 or fewer pieces, and those are most likely to appreciate. The company hasn’t been around long enough to consider any of their older pieces vintage. However, each piece is unique and features expensive materials that can quickly appreciate if you keep them in good condition.
Summing It Up
Richard Mille watches are so expensive because they produce so few of them per year. Most of their collections only have 30 pieces, and they each feature fine materials. The inclusion of titanium, sapphire crystal, gold, and diamonds makes Richard Mille watches as expensive as they are.
Some of their watches take months to complete which adds to their cost. It is rare for Richard Mille watches to vary in time by more than 8 seconds or 30 seconds total per day. The cheapest Richard Mille watch that you can find right now costs $85,000 and their priciest model costs $2 million.
Richard Mille watches are as good as Rolex, and some people find them to be better. You can get at least a $100,000 return on investment for a rare Richard Mille watch if you keep it in good condition.
Our Team of 10 includes jewelry experts, antique Buyers & Sellers, baseball card collectors, and other appraisal experts.