This watch got major attention at this year’s Baselworld. It came from left field and was completely unexpected. Introducing the Patek Philippe Ref 5524 Calatrava Pilot Travel Time.
Patek Philippe has made pilot watches in the past, in the period from the 1930’s to the 1950’s. These vintage models can be viewed in the Patek Philippe Museum. Now onto the modern iteration.
The watch has a 42-millimeter white-gold Calatrava-style case. As its names suggests the watch is a dual timer. The dark navy blue lacquered dial reflects the body paint of American fighter planes in the 1930s. Large applied Arabic numerals in white gold and broad baton-style steel hands with Superluminova coatings, allow for the local time to easily seen during the day and at night. The crown and the two time-zone pushers at 8 and 10 o’clock are fluted for a slip-free grip.
The home-time hour hand is skeletonized and remains discreetly in the background. It is hidden beneath the prominent local-time hour hand as long as local and home time are identical. A separate day/night indicator is assigned to both time zones (at 9 o’clock for local time and at 3 o’clock for home time). The analog date at 6 o’clock is totally new: it displays the date in 3-day increments.
The time-zone pushers are equipped with a patent-pending safety lock that prevents unintended adjustments of the local time setting. Before they can be operated, the pushers must be released with a quarter turn and then locked again with a twist in the opposite direction.
The watch features the self-winding caliber 324 S C FUS manufacture movement with a sweep seconds hand, an analog date, and a heavy central rotor in 21K gold. Like the time-zone mechanism, this legendary movement is superbly finished and thanks to ongoing innovation reflects the state of the art in mechanical watchmaking. The Spiromax® spring that breathes in the Gyromax® balance is made of Silinvar®, a derivative of silicon. The special properties of this material, combined with the geometry patented by Patek Philippe, assure high dependability as well as the rate accuracy tolerance of -3/+2 seconds per day as specified by the Patek Philippe Seal. The sapphire-crystal display back reveals beautiful details such as the chamfered bridges with Geneva striping, the circular-grained gold rotor with perlage in the center, snailed flanks, and a Calatrava cross. It features magnificent contrasts with bright shimmering metal, gold-filled engravings, and sparkling red bearing jewels.
Certainly an interesting move from Patek Philippe, although we think a stainless steel case may have been a better fit for a pilots watch.
It will retail for $42,000 Swiss Francs
For more information visit Patek Philippe.