Great Expectations

In little over a month the new Nautilus will be revealed. On October 11th the 30th anniversary Nautilus will be officially presented. This long awaited moment is being eagerly followed by dealers, collectors and opportunists. All are desperate for information on the new Nautilus for different reasons. Dealers because they desperately need interesting products that are in demand. Collectors will feel the urge to have, own or posses whatever Patek makes (regardless if it is an old lady's hat with a coo-coo clock). Opportunists/Speculators will want to make a quick buck on those that are impatient or just too slow to have ordered one.

It has taken Patek 30 years to rediscover the Nautilus. For some obscure reason the Nautilus has always been neglected, you could even say disrespected by Patek. Why else is the Nautilus presented so late into its 30th anniversary and not in the Basel Fair? Since the original Jumbo 3700 to the Moon-Phase 3712 Patek has made nothing but less than smart moves, and October 11th could be no different. You must go and read Velociphile's blog, he nails it. One could almost think that they where doing this on purpose, just not wanting the Nautilus to go further, being uncomfortable about its success. They seem to transmit the impression that; "... we make classic watches and not sporty modern stuff...". Looking back I simply have no other way to explain it. In spite of some of their unfortunate decisions to change, redesign or discontinue several models, the Nautilus grew. Now, after 30 years they just can't ignore it anymore.

Personally I must admit that the Nautilus has grown on me. Unlike the RoyalOak that most people love, few people hate and almost nobody is indifferent to... the Nautilus does not arise much passion at first. Over time you come to cherish its lines, that are much more 70'ish than the Oak. Maybe this is part of its charm, or maybe it's because it's a sporty Patek.

So what will October 11th bring? Apart from speculation I have no clue (but I will post any material I have since I do not have an agreement with Patek of any kind). However, I have a not so good feeling... but I could be wrong. For now rumor has it that there will be three models; a chrono, an annual calendar and a new 3712... others claim that there will be a chrono with the movement of the 5960 and a simple model (...Jumbo?). The strategy, according to Patek's management, is to go head-to-head against the reign of AP's RoyalOak. Will they succeed in denting their sales? Let's see what happens.

Here is my list of hopes and wishes regarding the "new" 30 anniversary Nauty:

... they don't use the occasion to raise the average price range of the large men's models by 10 to 20 thousand.
... they don't just make Gold and Platinum models. These materials are a contradiction in a sports watch.
... they don't start using "delicate" movements that are complicated but not really suited for a more "active" lifestyle.
... they don't go the OffShore way and give the Nautilus just a shot of steroids.

... they make the original Jumbo again. An exact unaltered replica of the 1976 Jumbo, in steel of course.
... they make a "World Timer" version in the Nautilus line.
... they make'em waterproof to 100 meters. Sport watches should have that depth rating at least. This would mean that you could go snorkeling with your Nautilus worry free.
... they use metals more adequate to what a sport watch should be. Ceramics, Alacrite, Titanium, Zalium, Liquid Hydrogen hardened steel, etc... These are only a few examples, expensive and cheap, of metals more adequate for a watch that is going to more punishment than your classic gold leather model.
... even if there is a more modern slightly redesigned/modern Nautilus, they maintain the classic Nautilus shape as an option, just in case we don't like the new stuff.

Now, the difference between "I HOPE" and "I WISH" is simple. I hope, is what I have a feeling they WILL do... and I will not like it. I wish, is what I believe they WON'T do... yet would be nice if they did.

In any case you can be certain that whatever Patek do, they will sell no matter what. Until October 11th I will be on the hunt for pictures and info, if I have any I will post them.

Patek Philippe...

1 comment:

Velociphile said...

Great post D. +1 on everything. Totally agree we can only PRAY for a minimalist 3700 reissue with true 21st century sportswatch ability. And I'd add to your list: on the fly micro adjust bracelet (Think G.O.) and a hidden 5134esque dual time capability.

Now, we know that ain't gonna happen! but fingers crossed - oh, and a €10500 price tag.