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This is a battle of the wrist! There is Richard Mille with its unique features and specifications. Then, Patek Philippe, that’s rapidly gaining popularity amongst wristwatch enthusiasts.

Lover of luxury Swiss wristwatches will love to know which of these two is the toughest of them all. Chances are that you want to know this too.

Hence, the need to compare these two amazing brands.

In this review article, we thoroughly review both wristwatch brands to know which one is the toughest watch. This Richard Mille vs. Patek Philippe article will provide a proper comparison of these classic watchmaking brands.

Before we proceed, understand that these two iconic brands are difficult to compare. The comparison doesn’t feel like the best way to go. Yet, it is necessary as it has become a big issue that must be addressed.

To start with, we will expose the hidden and striking differences between Richard Mille and Patek Philippe. That way, you will understand why we say these two brands are difficult to compare.

Then, we will attempt a comparison using certain features.

  • Rarity and scarcity
  • Quality of Craftsmanship and Materials
  • Complications and Movements
  • Sale Price
  • Resale Value

These features will form the basis of our comparison. With this comparison, we hope to assist you in making a good choice between Richard Mille and Patek Philippe. This comparison will provide you with all the necessary details. That way, it is easier for you to decide which one of these two wristwatches will suit you best.

If you are not choosing between these two, this article can still be a good read for you. This text will expose you to all you need to know about these two products from two big wigs in the watchmaking industry.

Keep reading!

The Difference Between Richard Mille And Patek Philippe

Patek Phillippe and Richard Mille are two unique brands. They are unique in their ideology and other ways. Only one thing is similar to these two. They are both providers of top-class quality.

Their uniqueness in ideology suggests why it is impossible to review these two brands similarly. Therefore, if we must compare them, we must begin by exposing their uniqueness and differences.

For Richard Mille, you have a new brand that is not up to twenty years. While for Patek Philippe, you have a brand with a heritage spanning over centuries.

Firstly, it is a brand that started in the 19th century but is still very relevant now. Then, there is another brand that is very new with less than twenty years of existence. It is only normal that the vision of these two companies is very different.

For us, we believe that Patek Philippe and Richard Mille are quite a pair that cover up for each other. Even though they might be opposite, they still complement each other.

Considering Patek Philippe, certain unique features make the brand one to admire.

  • There have their refined designs.
  • The use of established methods for top-class finishing
  • Outstanding arts like guillochage and engraving
  • Only gold and steel materials are used in their production. Those are the only materials fit for a brand with so much history.

In light of all of these, comparing Patek Philippe with Richard Mille is quite a daunting task. More so, Patek Philippe boasts an incredibly rich vintage market. This assortment is one thing Richard Mille can’t boast of.

For Richard Mille, their unique features are simply the opposite of Patek Philippe’s.

  • Wide variety of ultra-modern styles
  • A stimulating array of products
  • Products with skeletonized faces.
  • They are designed with materials that are refined, exotic, and creative.

Simply put, Richard Mille is a younger, opposite version of Philippe-Patek.

Having said all these, it is fascinating to discover how most Patek Philippe lovers have a deep soft spot for Richard Mille too. Richard Mille is a clear representation of what a Swiss watch traditionalist brand looks like.

This brand’s rapid growth and amazing success make it one of the highly-ranked wristwatch brands at the moment. To add to this, they are an independent brand.

Having properly painted a clear picture of their differences, we can now move right into the comparison. We will compare them based on the factors and features we mentioned earlier.

These factors or features might give you all the information you need to decide which is the toughest watch. Is it Patek Philippe or Richard Mille?

Richard Mille Vs Patek Philippe

Truly, these two watchmaking companies can be different in many ways. Yet, there are still certain similarities we can use as a basis for comparison.

The most significant feature that these two shares are in how much of Statement Watches they both are. Wearing any of these two wristwatches passes an instant message. Without needing to ask, it is clear that you must have tremendous spending power.

Imagine two people shaking hands with either of these two wristwatches on both of their wrists. That, right there, is a clear picture of “a billionaire’s handshake.” Richard Mille and Patek Philippe are wristwatch brands found only in a gathering of elites.

For Richard Mille, terrific craftsmanship and sizeable pricing are responsible for their colossal reputation. Again, this brand works with famous figures as ambassadors. Rafael Nadal, a tennis champion and former Formula One driver, Felipe Massa are some of the stars they work with.

On the other hand, Patek Philippe embraces royalty to show supremacy and class. For over a hundred years, this wristwatch has adorned the wrists of royalties. They, too, work with various essential ambassadors.

The sight of a Richard Mille or a Patek Philippe timepiece on the wrist of anyone screams one message. You are in the presence of a member of the exclusive wealthy circle.

Rarity and Scarcity

·         Richard Mille

Every year, Richard Mille produces less than five thousand (5000) wristwatches. This figure might seem relatively high for a new brand. However, with the level of popularity and demand Richard Mille enjoys, there is even the need to produce more.

There are only a few models of Richard Mille wristwatches with little production. Most of their models get produced in large quantities, all thanks to the demand they receive.

One model with few productions is the RM52 Tourbillon Skull. This model is scarce, with only six pieces produced in 18k pink gold and white ceramic.

·        Patek Philippe

Annually, Patek Philippe produces about 20,000 of its wristwatches. This brand has around one million wristwatches produced since they started back in 1839.

Patek’s entire production figure is what several Swiss watchmaking companies produce in a single year. A good example is Rolex. Rolex makes more than 1 million wristwatches each year.

Why then has Patek Philippe taken this much time to produce its first one million watches?

Patek’s watchmakers take their time and put in a great deal of effort into designing their wristwatches’ details. This time and effort put into their production process are why it takes nearly nine months to produce a simple Patek Philippe timepiece. A complex one may even take as long as two years to produce. This explains their scarcity.

Like Richard Mille, only a few models of Patek Philippe wristwatches have very few pieces produced, or very little still existing. For example, the 1941 reference 1518 timepiece made from stainless steel has only four pieces existing—one of these pieces sold for 6.8 million euros in 2016.

In all, both Richard Mille and Patek Philippe have one thing in common. They do not produce particular models of their wristwatches in a sizably large quantity. This does not mean that these models are not popular or in high demand. In fact, they are exceptionally popular and have high demand.

But that they are produced in small quantities is what makes these two brands unique and outstanding. For them, it is not about the quantity; it is about the quality. They are not swayed by how the market is. Instead, they decide how the market is.

Quality of Craftsmanship and Materials

·         Richard Mille

Here, high-tech materials are essential parts of the production process. The kinds of base plates and cases you see here can only be seen again in racing yachts or F1 cars. The materials are not only the best for making quality timepieces. They are state-of-the-art materials used in other areas of the high-tech world.

The kinds of materials used in producing Richard Mille’s timepieces cannot be found anywhere else in the watchmaking world. And when it comes to innovative craftsmanship, this brand is a force to reckon with.

·         Patek Philippe

Generating a concept and a unique design for Patek Philippe watches takes a lot of time. Sometimes, it takes as long as five years. Then, handcrafting all the parts and assembling them takes another one year at least.

Every part of a Patek Philippe wristwatch is made with hand finishes. This is one unique feature of these brands that sets them apart. All the engravings, enamel paintings, and other decorations are products of handicrafts. Watches from Patek Philippe are a piece of art!

For their materials used in production, you are sure to get the best quality too. All of the materials they use ads their mixes. They refine existing materials and develop theirs. They do not use a supplier’s material, whether gold or steel.

A Patek Philippe wristwatch is highly durable and lasts long enough. The design as production makes it easy to pass these timepieces down from generation to generation.

Complications and Movements

·         Richard Mille

Richard Mille wristwatches are concrete perfections of all you can get from 21st-century movements. Richard Mille’s wristwatches represent movements that are not regular. They have coatings of materials representing modern and top-quality watchmaking.

The team of dutiful Richard Mille micro-engineers and watchmakers spend several years refining and mastering various mechanisms. This is obvious in their outputs from year to year.

Richard Mille wristwatches feature GMT functions, annual calendars, split-seconds chronographs, flyback chronographs, and more. You will mostly find a tourbillon on most Richard Mille timepieces. This tourbillon is a rotating cage that adds a higher degree of refinement to the escapement.

·         Patek Philippe

Patek Philippe watches are the delights of most collectors. It is not just about their high-quality materials and innovative craftsmanship; their complications and movements are other lovely parts.

Patek’s watches feature split-seconds chronographs, second time zones, and virtually every other complication in watchmaking. Patek Philippe even invented some other complications. Likewise, their watches are incredibly precise and highly reliable.

For example, the Grandmaster Chime has 224 parts, 20 complications, and two dials. About 100,000 man-hours went into the production of this watch. Out of these hours, 60,000 hours was spent only on the movement. This explains this wristwatch’s complications.

Sale Price

·         Richard Mille

Richard Mille’s watches begin at a retail price of $80,000. This price rise to as high as several million dollars for the rarer and exceptionally exotic models.

A pre-owned Richard Mille wristwatch will cost nothing less than $30,000.

·         Patek Philippe

Patek Philippe watches begin at a retail price of $20,000. Their retail price then goes to as high as a huge $24 million.

A pre-owned Patek Philippe watch will cost you nothing more than $10,000. And, you can get it for as low as $5,000.

Resale value

·         Richard Mille

The value of a Richard Mille watch does not diminish so easily. In fact, they manage to hold their value well enough. This is why Forbes regards Richard Mille as one of the best investments when it concerns high-end watches.

Yet, how well the value holds still depends on the model you own. Another part of reselling Richard Mille watch is how niche their market. Finding a buyer can really take a lot of time. Unlike other Swiss watches like Rolex with readily available buyers.

·         Patek Philippe

Patek Philippe retains a very solid resale value. The resale value is even stronger at a certain age or vintage level. The value can increase considerably. In a way, they are an example of a good investment.


When considering the toughest watches out there, two names will appear. Richard Mille and Patek Philippe. These two are unique in different ways. They are as well similar in some other ways.

With all the features we have compared them by in this comparison review article, it is easier to choose!


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