The Importance Of The RM 47 Tourbillon Samurai

The Importance Of The RM 47 Tourbillon Samurai

Richard Mille is always looking for the bold and unusual. The Swiss luxury watch manufacturer did the same when it launched the RM 47 Tourbillon Samurai. A combination of art and spirituality, and here we have a new masterpiece from Richard Mille, this time as an aesthetic tribute to the culture of Japan. 

The RM 47 was the fruit of four years of design work and constant and intense reflection. This watch is a piece of art on the wrist. It is a watch of a new kind, featuring a caliber made extremely compact to make room for a stylized Samurai suit of armor which was crafted by hand entirely.

The RM 47 was born during a friendly conversation between Richard Mille and Fernando Alonso, a two-time Formula 1 world champion and partner of Richard Mille and an enthusiast of the traditional Japanese arts and Samurai principles.

The RM 47 Tourbillon harks back to the sources of Japanese crafting tradition in proposing an allegory of Bushido, the samurai code of ethics whose values still prevail in Japanese society.

It is not without reason that the samurai armor at the heart of the RM 47 Tourbillon sports the crest of the Asano clan.


With the movement of the RM 47, its case, and all the decorations, we can see that there was a design approach intended to guarantee that the integration of all the various elements was harmonious and effective.

The tonneau-shaped case has three parts with a case back in black TZP ceramic; the case band is in 3N yellow gold and has a bezel. 

This new model has exceeded the creative limits of Richard Mille and just shows how innovative the Swiss luxury watchmaker can be, and this shows why he is one of the best in this business. This watch takes place in the precious lineage of "ornamental" watches typical of the brand. The RM 47 was hand carved entirely by the engraver Pierre-Alain Lozeron and was painted by his wife, Valérie Lozeron. The Samurai armor displays the different aspects of the ancestral Japanese culture.

Evoking the spirit of Bushido, the Samurai code of ethics whose values still prevail in Japanese society, the armor is given life through 3N yellow gold, which recalls the gold leaf used in ancient Japan to design and decorate the finest shrines of the country. It was also used in certain works of traditional craftsmanship. 

One of the most remarkable facts about this watch is the engraving and painting by hand. In total, it takes more than 16 hours of engraving and 9 hours of painting, taking more than a whole day, to obtain the eleven components that make up the Samurai, with everything perfectly integrated from the front and the back, around the movement of the RM 47 Tourbillon.

Between sword and chisel, between the cutting edge of the blade and the incisions defined by the precision of the engraver's technique, there are many parallels to evoke the similarities between the qualities of these warriors and those demanded by our artistic crafts." —Pierre Alain Lozeron, Engraver at Richard Mille.

Like a warrior, the Samurai of the RM 47 Tourbillon is made up of various elements that provide special protection for the movement, the manually wound Calibre RM47. Along with certain gear train components, the tourbillon carriage is discreetly visible from either side of the case.

Due to engraved and painted decorations, the movement acquires a rare depth, indicating that extreme attention was paid to the finishing and detailing. 

Asano Naganori, the daimyo, or chief, of the family fiefdom at the turn of the eighteenth century, was the lord of the 47 rōnin who avenged his death before following him into the afterworld. The Asano family's Kamon is featured on the tourbillon at 6 o'clock.

The baseplate and skeletonized bridges are made from grade 5 titanium to ensure that the watch works optimally. This offers high corrosion resistance, remarkable rigidity, and perfectly flat surfaces. 

The crown, crafted of titanium, Carbon TPT, and polished 3N yellow gold, has a Japanese maple leaf for its pattern. 


Creativity and Richard Mille go hand in hand. When one thinks that Richard Mille has done it all and can not be more creative, he comes up with something new and unique, something more creative than the last. We hope that this is just the beginning and that the creative mind of Richard Mille and his team continues to produce timepieces such as this. Such history is just a timepiece. It's just amazing!