Last updated April 2020
If you’re a true watch buff, you will no doubt have heard of the luxury swiss watch brand Richard Mille. The precision watch company was founded in 1999 by the man himself, Richard Mille; setting off in collaboration with timepiece legends Audemars Piguets to target the top of the high end, luxury watch market.
Now, given the title of this article, you’re probably sat there thinking – ‘Pfft, a cheap Richard Mille, you’re joking right?’
With the most expensive Richard Mille piece coming in at a cool £2 million, looking to purchase a cheaper model in the range can be a tough task.
With that established, let’s tackle the question on everyone’s mind…
Why are Richard Mille watches so expensive?
To start off, the materials used in any Richard Mille watch are truly second to none. The cases are only manufactured using Gold and Titanium, mixing in some Carbon and Quartz infusions to give another level of quality and resilience to the lucky owner.
Richard Mille watches really show their class in their groundbreaking design – utilising the sort of engineering typically seen within Formula 1 cars and and aerospace projects. The brand are always working to push the boundaries, utilising curved edge surfaces for micrometer precision.
As if the exteriors weren’t enough, Richard Mille watches also pioneer groundbreaking 21st century mechanics to turn timekeeping into a true art form.
With the Richard Mille range setting a new standard in luxury watchmaking, it’s really no surprise they can demand those high price tags. So, are there really any true bargains out there when it comes to this Swiss heavyweight?
Let’s take a look at Richard Mille watch prices…
Richard Mille RM 005
At around £35,000 pre-owned, the RM 005 is a popular choice at the lower end of the Richard Mille range and a great place for us to start. Most often found in Titanium or Rose Gold, the piece comes in at a modest 38 x 45mm size with a durable rubber strap to finish.
Due to its popularity, you may be able to find some special edition models on the market, specifically the Felipe Massa edition – but as always, expect to pay a little more.
Update April 2020 – We’ve reassessed the market and the value of the RM 005 has risen recently. Pre-owned models are now commonly found around £50,000 mark.
Richard Mille RM 016
Another popular item found at the lower end of the Richard Mille range is the RM 016. This piece is known worldwide as the ‘Ultra Thin’ due to its paper-like design. At only 8.25mm thick, it truly lives up to the nickname and comes in Titanium and Rose Gold.
At around £40,000 pre-owned, those with a thinner wallet can also get their hands on a Richard Mille with the RM 016.
Richard Mille RM 010
For our next piece, our wallets need to start getting a little bigger to consider Richard Mille, with the RM010 model. This watch has the classic Richard Mille look and feel with precision engineering at its heart. Supported with a carbon fibre flange, this watch comes in 3 varieties of Rose Gold, White Gold or Titanium.
Brand new, these watches will set you back anywhere up to £90,000 for the most premium version. If you are happy to go pre-owned, a great deal can be found for a RM 010 at around £65,000. Either way, quality and style are assured with this staple timepiece.
Richard Mille RM 007-01
Richard Mille don’t just make men’s watches – with it’s White/Rose Gold case and Sapphire dials, the RM 007 is not short of premium features. Whilst this watch has no James Bond relation, finding one is just as hard with not many left in circulation.
Where they can be found, expect to shell out around £100,000 for a pre-owned model. Whilst you’re taking a look, also keep your eye out for the pink or purple variants of the RM007-01 range, they offer a quirky design style for those who like to truly stand out, but as always, expect to pay a little more!
Richard Mille RM 030
Moving along the range we come to the Richard Mille RM 030. The 030 was designed with performance in mind with its sandblasted, grade 5 titanium makeup. Such is the popularity of this watch, many different special editions has been released, helping to make it a true collectors items.
Depending on the edition you decide to go for, the RM 030 will set you back anywhere up to £150,000 brand new. If you are looking for something a little cheaper, try going pre-owned to get the price down to around £90,000 for the Titanium model and £110,000 for the Rose Gold.
Richard Mille RM 002
We are now really starting to move up the ladder in the Richard Mille collection, bringing us nicely to our next piece, the RM 002. As with the RM 010, this watch is a staple of the Richard Mille philosophy, combining intricate design with top notch materials to guarantee the best in quality.
The RM 002 uses a Tourbillon movement which utilises intricate mechanics to ensure timekeeping is kept accurate throughout its life. Tourbillon watches don’t come cheap and the RM 002 is no exception.
To grab an RM 002 new will set you back a mere £250,000 – that’s enough to buy a family home in the UK! If you don’t have quite this much available to spend on a gift, a pre-owned model can be snapped up for around £150,000. Bargain, right?
Some Honourable Mentions
Whilst we have taken a look at the pieces at the lower end of the Richard Mille range, this article wouldn’t be complete without considering the heavyweights. Richard Mille is known for it’s groundbreaking wristwatches – let’s have a look at the best deals….
Richard Mille RM 50-03
At the beginning of this article, we compared a Richard Mille watch to the engineering magnitude of a Formula 1 car, that wasn’t just a fancy comparison. In collaboration with McLaren F1, Richard Mille created the RM 50-03. This premium wristwatch has put them in pole position with watch and racing enthusiasts alike.
Not only does this watch make you feel fast, it set a world record for the lightest mechanical chronograph watch ever made – all in, it comes to an incredibly light 40 grams. But that’s not all! It was also the first watch to ever use the super durable material Graphene.
Unfortunately you will have to be on a racing driver’s salary to get your hands on one of these. At the time of release it sold worldwide at a whopping £1 million. Since then the price has dropped (a little) with lucky buyers managing to pick one up for around £900,000.
Update April 2020 – As you can imagine the market for this piece is incredibly niche and prices still remain sky high for this F1 inspired model. The good news is though, if you are in the market for RM50-03, prices have dropped to around the £850,00 price point, especially for the Orange themed version.
Richard Mille RM 56-02
Whilst this article is designed to help you find a real bargain, it wouldn’t be fair to Richard Mille or really the world, to not mention this next piece. The RM 56-02 is currently the flagship piece in the Richard Mille range and in all honestly, it’s not hard to see why.
Whilst at first glance it may look like plastic, the RM 56-02 casing is made entirely of Sapphire. Not only that, Mille decided the inside needed to be revolutionary too, suspending the mechanisms within the watch using a pulley system of micrometer thick braided cable.
This pioneering design was first introduced in 2012 through the RM 56-02 siblings, the RM 56 and 56-01 models; it’s fair to say all 3 have truly taken the world by storm. The 56-02 price is staggering, something which you may need to sit down for – $2,020,000!
Not many of the 56-02 are on the market, but if you are looking for a great gift idea, you can grab a 56-01 at around £1,900,000.
Here at Watch & Bullion, we’ve had the pleasure to hold some Richard Mille pieces in the past, take a look here to see our historic collection!