For the last few years Patek have surprised us with some of their new releases, and for better or worse, this year is no different. During our Patek meeting we were very excited to see one of our favourite timepieces that embodies the quintessence of classic Patek, in a new case metal. The 5170 used to be available in yellow-gold but was discontinued some time ago. The 5170, while not new, is now available in rose-gold, with either a white dial, with rose-gold applied Breguet numerals (which we saw last year) or a black dial with rose-gold applied Breguet numerals. This combination certainly takes things up a notch.
The 5170 has been around for a while now but with the combination of the dial update from last year and the fact it now comes in rose-gold, the 5170R is seriously one attractive looking time piece. Like all previous iterations of the 5170, it uses Patek’s in-house manually wound chronograph movement the calibre CH 29-535 PS, which is considered to be one of the finest traditional chronograph movements in the world today. And of course, there is much to admire about the level of finishing. Unlike its predecessor the 5070, which used the calibre CH 27-70 PS that was largely based on a Lemania movement but Patek completely reworked it, creating a beautiful chronograph movement nonetheless.
The 18-carat rose-gold case of the 5170R measures 39.4 mm and its sleek shape follows the traditional Patek Calatrava design. The lugs extend from the case band with a slight curve that aids comfort. The chronograph is operated with rectangular shaped pushers at 2 and 4 o’clock, which has been a typical attribute of Patek Philippe wrist chronographs for many decades. The crown is knurled for convenient winding with two fingers but small enough not to jab the wrist when the hand is bent back.
Beneath the sapphire-glass is the black dial, which differs from the 5170G with the use of rose-gold applied Breguet numerals. As for the silver dial variations, it too features rose-gold applied Breguet numerals. Just like the 5170G shown last year, Patek haven’t included any form of measuring scale but have retained the railway track minute scale, which features slightly compressed Breguet numerals. The engine-turned seconds sub dial at 9 o’clock and the 30-minute counter at 3 o’clock are recessed in the main dial and sit just below the horizontal centre axis. Both of the rose-gold 5170’s naturally make use of matching metal leaf-shape hands.
The Patek Philippe chronograph reference 5170 in general is, in my opinion, a classic contemporary timepiece that I’m sure will always be remembered as the traditional chronograph wristwatch of the 21st century. And while I’ve said it before, it would be nice to see this chronograph in stainless steel but who knows that still may happen?
The new Patek Philippe Chronograph ref. 5170R is priced at £53,320. For more information visit the official Patek Philippe website.