Recent years have seen one aesthetic trend — blue dials — coming on strong in the watch world, and another — two-tone steel-and-gold looks — trickling back into vogue after a few years out of fashion. Both are in evidence in this week’s Watch to Watch, the new two-tone, chronograph version of Patek Philippe’s luxury sport watch, the Nautilus.
Patek Philippe introduced the first Nautilus, a recognized classic among sport watches along with the Rolex Daytona, Omega Seamaster, Heuer Carrera, and Audemars Piguet Royal Oak, in 1976, and re-engineered it for modern tastes in 2007. Since then, Patek has released several versions of the Nautilus, with various complications (like last year’s version with an annual calendar) and in different materials.
This model, designated Reference 5980/1AR-001, is the first in the revamped Nautilus family to combine stainless steel and rose gold, with gold used for the bezel, screw-down crown, and chronograph pushers. The bracelet has both steel and gold links and the fold-over clasp that is characteristic of the Nautilus. The case is 40.5 mm in diameter and water-resistant to 120 meters. Gold, treated with luminescent coating, is also used for the hour markers on the blue gradient dial. The dial has a date window at 3 o’clock and a chronograph subdial at 6 o’clock that tallies both minutes (up to 60) and hours (up to 12), while the central chronograph hand sweeps around the dial.
The movement, which can be seen through a sapphire window in the caseback, is Patek Philippe’s manufacture Caliber CH 28-520 C, an automatic movement powering a date indicator and chronograph function. It is 30 mm in diameter and 6.63 mm thick, with 327 parts total, including 35 jewels and 13 bridges. Its Gyromax balance oscillates at a frequency of 28,800 vph (4 Hz). Like all Patek Philippe watches since 2009, this one forgoes the famed Geneva Hallmark in favor of its own Patek Philippe Seal, which the company says has even more stringent standards of quality.
The Patek Philippe Ref. 5980 Nautilus Chronograph retails in the U.S. for $67,700. (Click photos below for larger images.)