Patek Philippe made waves at Baselworld this year by introducing two of its popular complications in steel versions, a combination that is rare at the company. “Steel watches represent only 20% of our volume, because when you produce a limited number of movements, you have to favor the precious metals,” says international marketing director Jasmina Steele.
To see a steel cased Patek for complications is even rarer. One of the new introductions (pictured above) is a steel version of the Annual Calendar Chronograph – the Ref. 5960/1A. (This complication was originally introduced in 2006 in a platinum case.) The movement, automatic Caliber CH 28-520 IRM QA 24H, is unchanged, as is the case (except that it is now stainless steel), but the dial has been refurbished and the bracelet, also steel, is new for the brand. The bracelet is called the “drop” style because the links resemble raindrops.
Inside the hour scale at 6 o’clock are two concentric chronograph minute scales, one counting 0 to 30 and the other, 30 to 60. There are prominent Day, Date and Month indications, outlined in blackened gold. The first day of the month is displayed in red and the rest in black. There is also a power reserve indicator and day/night indications. The watch has a 45-hour power reserve.
Another introduction in steel was the Nautilus Travel Time Chronograph Ref. 5990/1A, with both dual time and chronograph functions, which replaces the Ref. 5980, in gold. The case was redesigned to accommodate pushers on the left side, one to adjust the time forward and the other to adjust it backward. The hour hand for local time can be adjusted in one-hour steps with the plus and minus correctors on the left case side.
If, by mistake, the wearer pushes both forward and back buttons at the same time, the watch automatically defaults to forward. It has two hour hands on the same axis. The lower one is skeletonized, and the upper one matches the style of the minute hand. The skeleton hand displays home time while the solid hour hand indicates local time. It contains Caliber CH 28-520 C FUS.
Also notable is the Calatrava Ref. 5153G-010 with an officer’s style case – it is hinged, with a dust cover that opens to reveal a sapphire caseback. This is the first white gold version and the first with a stunning guilloché dial, something that really stands out for a brand that, while all its watches are exquisitely finished, is not known to be highly decorative. It contains the Caliber 324 S C.
The Grand Complications Ref. 5140 features a moon phase and leap year indicator, as well as day, date, and month. We saw this model in two new versions: the platinum Ref. 5140P-013 with ebony-black dial and diamond hour markers (pictured above) and the rose gold Ref. 5140R-011 (pictured below).
The honey brown dial in contrast with the platinum case gives the new Grand Complications Ref. 5496P-014 a unique look. This perpetual calendar timepiece features hours, minutes and seconds, as well as a sweep seconds hand, a retrograde date hand, a moon phase indicator, and day, month, leap year apertures.
Patek Philippe revealed it would be updating its iconic Ref. 5270G earlier this year. While the original featured a silver dial, the revamped model comes in two new colors: the blue sunburst (Ref. 5270G-014) and the silvery opaline (Ref. 5270G-013) pictured above. The dial also got a few more subtle refinements, with the tachometer scale now circling the outside of the dial, and the hands and hour markers in 18K gold instead of black oxidized gold.
The Grand Complications Ref. 5271P-001 is a true show-stopper: this perpetual calendar chronograph features a tachymeter scale, 30-minute counter subdial at 3 o’clock, a date subdial at 6 o’clock with moon phase indicator, and a small seconds subdial at 9 o’clock, as well as day and month apertures. This platinum timepiece also features 58 baguette diamonds on the bezel and lugs, and one baguette diamond at 12 o’clock.
For women, updated Ladies Complications models include the Ref. 4968G-010, a moon phase watch with a new mother-of-pearl dial, applied ruthenium-black numerals and ribbons of diamonds in graduating sizes around the case.