Existing amongst some of their best-known watches, the Patek Philippe Chronograph is a model that has always welcomed serious scrutiny from collectors. Due to the complexity and capital required, the in-house chronograph movement has always been a test of a brand’s capability and for Patek Philippe, this was something to be taken extremely seriously.
Launched in 2019, the Chronograph ref. 5172G had big shoes to fill with the outgoing 5170 and the legendary 5070 that came before that.
Starting with its design, the ref. 5172G features a classical aesthetic that blends the golden vintage era that so many collectors lust over with modern manufacturing techniques and design cues. Framed in a 41mm x 11.45mm round white gold case, the ref. 5172G features a grainy, pared-back navy blue dial with white gold, applied Arabic numerals, syringe hands, and two subdials found just below the 3 to 9 o'clock hemisphere- one the running seconds and the other the chronograph 30-minute counter. With a tachymeter scale around its periphery, the ref. 5172G's dial is legible, functional, and downright stunning.
The ref. 5172G's white gold case enhances its vintage-inspired aesthetic far beyond the reach of its dial. With its fluted lugs, stepped mid-case, and pump pushers, it is remarkably reminiscent of the 1940s Patek ref. 1463. With their sunburst decoration on their tips, the ref. 5172's pump pushers are directly inspired by its predecessor, while its crown is a slight departure thanks to its flatter and more ergonomic profile, which offers a hint of modern design to the timepiece.
Beyond its incredible construction and gorgeous dial, the crème de la crème of manual-wind chronograph movements is found in the ref. 5172G, as exhibited by its sapphire crystal caseback. Featuring a 65-hour power reserve, a vertical clutch, a column wheel assembly, and Patek's impeccable finishing, the CH 29-535 PS took five years to design and create with six patents found within. An incredible testament to Patek's ingenuity, this movement is a wonderful reminder of Patek's horological merit. While the ref. 5172G might fly under the radar; a second glance will reveal the depth of detail found in this watch, from its case to its pushers, to its movement and beyond. A fantastic exhibition of Swiss watchmaking, this isn't your typical dress chronograph; this is what every other dress chronograph wishes it could be.