If you keep a close eye on Patek Philippe, you probably remember the vintage-styled 3670A and 5950A chronographs that were equipped with hand-wound movements and featured only slightly modernized “historic” cases. The new Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar automatic watch (Ref. 5940J-001) that was officially presented last week during Baselworld 2012 show comes in the same cushion-shaped body, but is equipped with an ultra-thin self-winding caliber that not only brings you an advanced version of perpetual calendar, but is also considered to be one of the most accurate mechanical movements currently in production.
Being just 27.5 millimeters in diameter and less than 3.9 mm thick, the time-proven Caliber 240 Q movement features an off-centered unidirectional micro-rotor and is equipped with the aforementioned complete calendar module that adds only 1.35 mm of thickness to the total height of 2.53 mm of the “tractor” movement.
According to official data, this movement that bears the famous Patek Philippe seal on one of its bridges has a guaranteed accuracy of -3/+2 seconds per day, which makes it comfortably comply with COSC chronometer certification standards. In fact, the watch is more precise than most mechanical “chronometers” out there.
The only thing that somehow disappoints me here is that Patek Philip decided not to equip the watch with their relatively new version of the movement that features not only their high-tech Gyromax Si balance wheel with Silinvar parts, but is also good for as long as 70 hours of power reserve!
The older version that powers this particular watch can only run for 48 hours: good, but possibly not enough if you don’t plan to wear the watch on weekends and don’t really like to put the precious thing into an automatic winder.
As I have already mentioned, the watch is presented in a vintage-styled cushion-shaped case, which seems to be inspired by the gorgeous 1927 Patek Philippe Triple-Date Calendar watch, although its dial shed a great deal of Art Deco elements in favor of more minimalistic approach.
Only 37 millimeters in width and less than 45 mm in length, this beautiful case will look good on any manly wrist, whether it belongs to a football player or a skinny metrosexual.
Another nice thing about this watch is that it comes with a pair of interchangeable sapphire crystal and solid case-backs.
As it is usually the case with perpetual calendars, the cream-toned, grained dial of the watch looks somewhat cramped, since each of its three sub-dials serves not one, but two functions.
The one at 3 hours indicates current month and leap year; the sub-dial at 6 o’clock displays phase of the moon, as well as date; and, finally, the counter at 9 hours shows current day of week as well as 24-hour indication.
The last feature must be especially handy if you spend a great deal of your life in casinos or underwater on board of a huge nuclear submarine the size of Gerald R. Ford class aircraft carrier making final preparations to take over the world.
Photos: Patek Philippe
Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar Automatic in Yellow Gold (Ref. 5940J-001) watch specification
Price: $94,000 (MSRP)
Movement: Automatic, Caliber 240 Q, 27.5 x 3.88 mm, 22-carat gold micro-rotor, ultra-thin, in-house, Swiss Made
Number of jewels: 27
Movement frequency: 21,600 vph
Movement decoration: Perlage (circular graining,) Geneva stripes, Patek Philippe Seal
Functions: Hours, minutes, perpetual calendar (day, date, month, leap year,) moonphase, 24-hour indicator
Power reserve: 48 hours
Case material: 18-carat yellow gold
Bezel material: Matches case
Crown material: Matches case
Case shape: Cushion
Bezel shape: Cushion
Case size: 37.00 mm x 44.60 mm
Case height: No data
Lug width: No data
Dial: Cream, grained
Numerals: Arabic, applied, yellow gold
Hour markers: Applied, yellow gold
Hands: Leaf-shaped, yellow gold
Water resistance: 30 meters
Strap: Hand-stitched, matt chocolate brown alligator leather strap with square scales on 18-carat yellow gold pin buckle
Case back: Sapphire / Solid (interchangeable covers)