The Patek Phillipe Nautilus is a truly classic watch from a legendary maker. Now with more than 40 years of history, the watch continues to evolve. The shape has stayed the same over the years with a few exceptions. The shape is a rounded off octagon. Its unusual shape attracts your attention. The embossed face and rich colors keep your attention. Add it all up and you have a steel sports watch that’s worth its weight in gold.
GERALD GENTA WAS ON A ROLL IN THE EARLY 1970S
Most designers hope to create one iconic watch. Gerald Genta didn’t stop at the Royal Oak; he created the Nautilus and IWC's Ingenieur. Genta sketched the PP masterpiece in 1974, inspired by the octagonal shape of a porthole. Today, five different models make up the current Nautilus collection. Makes you wonder if Genta is a Royal Oak or Nautilus guy. The guy probably wears two or three watches at a time.
A NOD TO GENTA’S ROYAL OAK
The Royal Oak was the first all-steel sports watch. Audemars Piguet introduced the first all-steel sports watch in 1976. Steel watches existed before the Royal Oak appeared. There are fine examples going back to the 1950s. The Royal Oak took a little time to catch on and was not an immediate success. Today, it has earned a cult-like following of doting wearers who swear it is the best watch in the world.
SIZE DIDN’T MATTER UNTIL 1976
The Nautilus featured a larger case. It measures 42 mm, three millimeters bigger than the Royal Oak. Along with its unusual shape, the size put it on the map for sports watch lovers. 40 years later, the watch, along with the Calatrava, is one the Patek Philippe’s greatest creations
42MM CASES WEREN’T IN FASHION AT THE TIME
Why is that significant, you ask? For one thing, 42mm cases were not that popular at the time. Watches have gotten bigger over the last 20 years or so. A good example is the Breitling Super Avenger II, REF A13371111B1A. The case comes in at an impressive 48.6 millimeters. That’s quite a range of watch sizes if you think 38 millimeters to 48 millimeters. The fashions change over time. So do case widths.
STAINLESS STEEL EMERGED AS THE NEW GOLD
At Basel world 1974, Gerald Genta showed a sketch of the Nautilus to Patek Phillipe executives. Whereas the Royal Oak is an octagonal shape with 8 obvious sides, the Nautilus was a rounded octagon. What’s more, the embossed horizontal grooves on the dial made it easy to recognize.
THE NAUTILUS WAS A GAME CHANGER
Before introducing the Nautilus, PP made gorgeous gold watches with sophisticated features. The Nautilus was a departure and launched a new direction. A 42 mm case was different enough to expand the line and gave room for the company to grow. 1980 saw the introduction of the lady Nautilus. The watch took off from there and grew. It took a little time to catch on and the lady Nautilus gave it a boost in popularity.
THE NAUTILUS 5711 BY REFERENCE NUMBERS
THE FAMOUS REFERENCE 5711
This is a classic three-hand watch. A date indicator takes the place of the 3 on the embossed dial. Dials came in various colors depending on the configuration. The larger case sizes, 42 and 43 millimeters, are often referred to by fans as the “Jumbo”. There several variations on this classic. For the most part, the case shape and function are the same from watch to watch. The reference number indicates the case material.
The codes read IA for steel, IP for platinum, IR for rose gold, IG for white gold, and IJ for yellow gold.
This beauty is white gold with a dark face and metal bracelet. Currently out of production.
REFERENCE 5711J-001 This is the yellow gold version with a white dial and brown leather strap. Currently out of production.
REFERENCE 5711/1A - 010 This is the dark Blue- Black dial in stainless with a metal bracelet.
REFERENCE 5711/1A - 011 Like the 010, this is the same watch with a white dial in stainless with a metal bracelet.
REFERENCE 5711/IR - 001 The same movement and case as the other 5711s. This watch comes in rose gold and features a rich deep brown face
REFERENCE 5711 / 1P The IP is one of two offered in solid platinum which of course you can tell when you see prices around 190,000 pounds. Solid platinum case, bracelet with a darker face. Currently out of production.
REFERENCE 5711/1P This stunning watch comes to you in a solid platinum case and bracelet with a deep, richer blue face. The production run was 700 pieces. The face, embossed with the dates 1976 to 2016, marks 40 years of production. Offered only one year, it is currently out of production. Prices are climbing and right now range up to USD $375,000 at auction.
The Nautilus lives on in the lore of iconic timepieces. Gerald Genta created a timeless shape and it lives on with only minor changes. A 40-year journey to the heart’s of PP collectors around the world inspired by a ship's porthole shape. Strap one on; you'll know what we mean when we say it is one of the most sought after of all Patek Phillipe watches. N.B., we are unable to confirm at this writing if Captain Nemo wears a Nautilus.
THE TIMELESS PASSION OF WATCHNERD.COM Not content with a watch that only tells time? Special watches are out there. If you are asking yourself how do I choose a watch like this? What should I pay? Is there value behind the brand and price? You owe it to yourself to look closer into the Watchnerd.com buyer decision making guides. Watchnerd.com shows you your options as a buyer. Our guides are indispensable while trying to decide which brand and model is right for you. Watchnerd.com is ready to help. Contact us today! Our passion is timeless.
Be first! Share your thoughts with us.
Please login to leave a reply.