Opinion: Patek Philippe Nautilus 40th Anniversary


Ahh, the new Patek Philippe Nautilius 40th Anniversary pieces. What an easy, easy target to take some pot shots at one of the most venerable and respected horological houses ever. You know what? I am only partially going to take the bait here.

The real easy target of the two is the chronograph, aka ref. 5976/1G. Now, as has been mentioned elsewhere, you’d be forgiven for thinking this was a tweaked 5980 as it has the same movement and looks grossly the same in the press release as its predecessor. But no, the booger on the lip of this watch is the fact that its dial diameter is 44mm. Sure, people are throwing around this 49.25mm number because of the case wings, but the watch is not really almost 50mm (aka, a Graham). Still, a 44mm nautilus is an affront to the memory of Gerald Genta and really, an offensive way to honor his creation’s 40th anniversary. Nonetheless, I’m sure there are enough #richdicks/upper class twits out there that are salivating over the prospect of a 44mm white gold LE nautilus. I hope they enjoy it.


The other booger on the lip, so to speak, of both these watches is the embossed text on the dials. I don’t mind the diamond markers in the least. The extra text however is not so easily judged. The dial of the 5711/1A is schizophrenic in regards to its own color, reflection and overall appearance. While the text layout itself is unsightly, especially on the chronograph, it might actually not be quite so detrimental when viewed in the metal on that blue dial. I am quite certain you won’t see it prominently from a distance. So, let’s reserve our judgement there until people really start showing it in real life.
Let’s talk about the 5711P a little more. This is the watch many of us Nautilus fans were expecting with the addition of some extra text and diamond markers. Many of our discussions leading up to this release went something like, “What are they gonna do for the anniversary?” Followed by, “I have no idea, you can’t really improve upon the 5711.” So let’s give PP credit there. They made a platinum special edition that will be somewhat more accessible than the 5711P has been in the past and didn’t really mess around too much otherwise (assuming of course that the added dial text is relatively unobtrusive).
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Dean’s love of horology was handed down to him by his grandfather, a watch shop owner and watch lover. He is an unrepentant Phish fan and a lover of nature. You can reach him on Instagram/Twitter @ghotihead2001 or ghotihead2001@gmail.com.

1 Comment

  • October 4, 2016


    These are mainly notable for showing how much Patek’s design savvy has suffered under Thierry Stern’s tenure.

    From the Eurostile numbering lifted straight off Rolex’s OP and Milgauss dials (with Patek’s signature inept distortion) to the tacky headstone marking, it’s clear that they just don’t know what they’re doing.

    No wonder their press statements seem so defensive these days. 🙂