Ok, so ‘big’ may be something of an overstatement. The Patek Philippe Aquanaut Ref 5168G is after all only slightly bigger than its predecessors. Presented in white gold, it offers sporty luxury with a touch of refinement. And don’t even get us started on that blue dial. An ideal choice for every day wear, we take a closer look at this perennial favourite.
Patek Philippe Aquanaut Ref 5168G
The Patek Philippe Aquanaut has always been considered an entry-level sports watch, sort of a Nautilus-junior if you will. Over the last few years, however, it has really come into its own. Previously some may have bought an Aquanaut primarily because they wanted to own a Patek Philippe sports watch but couldn’t afford the more expensive Nautilus. Now, however, the Aquanaut is very much considered a desirable model in its own right.
The Patek Philippe Aquanaut Ref 5168G only serves to further increase this desirability. It’s presented here for the first time in an up-sized 42.2mm case (the Ref 5167 and Ref 5164A offered 40mm and 41mm cases respectively) made from 18k white gold. The model takes its design cues from the original 1976 Nautilus of the same size that was nicknamed “Jumbo”. It still retains that sporty, chic style that made the Aquanaut so popular with beautiful young people in the first place, however. The slightly larger size just makes it that little bit better suited to modern tastes. Measuring 8.25mm thick, it wears very comfortably on the wrist.
In keeping with the modern theme, the night blue hue of the dial and the strap is also new. Seen previously on popular Patek Philippe Nautilus models – although in a lighter hue – the night blue color of the dial gradates from bright in the center to black toward the outside. Completing the look is the familiar, finely embossed checkerboard pattern found on the dial of every Patek Philippe Aquanaut. Hours are shown by contrasting applied Arabic numerals in white gold, which have been liberally treated with a Superluminova coating. As a final touch the luminous five-minute markers are set by hand appliques in 18K white gold.
On the reverse side of the watch a sapphire case back offers a nice view of the self-winding caliber 324 S C movement. Although relatively simple in function, it features some of the best developments Patek Philippe has to offer, including its patented Gyromax® balance complete with Spiromax® balance spring (in Silinvar®). A unidirectional 21k white gold rotor ensures that energy is constantly being generated from the movement of your wrist. The movement offers a maximum power reserve of 45 hours when fully wound.
The finishing meanwhile, while not excessive, is certainly exquisite, with high attention to detail. The bridges, for example, are decorated with strictly parallel Geneva striping, and feature round-chamfered and polished edges that emphasize the contours of the individual bridges. The rate accuracy meanwhile is -3 to +2 seconds per day, as specified by the directives of the Patek Philippe Seal.
Completing the look is a night blue composite strap embossed with the same checkerboard pattern as the dial and closed with a double-security fold-over clasp in 18K white gold. Retail is set at GBP 29,520.
The Patek Philippe Aquanaut Ref 5168G really is a gorgeous watch and I only wish it were available in steel so that it might be a little closer to my price range.
For more information please visit Patek Philippe.
Technical Specifications: Patek Philippe Aquanaut Ref 5168G
- Case: White gold – 42.2 mm – screw-down crown – sapphire crystal caseback – water resistant to 120 metres.
- Dial: Blue embossed dial – black gradated – gold applied numerals with luminescent coating.
- Movement: Calibre 324 S C – mechanical self-winding – date, sweep seconds – Gyromax® balance complete with Spiromax® balance spring (in Silinvar®) – centre hour, minute and seconds hands – Patek Philippe seal.
- Price: GBP 29,520.