The flagship model in Patek Philippe’s special edition line-up for the Watch Art Grand Exhibition in Tokyo, the Quadruple Complication Limited Edition Tokyo 2023 ref. 5308P-010 is an entirely new reference that becomes one of the most complicated watches in the Patek Philippe catalogue.
Described as a quadruple complication because it has a minute repeater, perpetual calendar, and a twin chronograph, the ref. 5308P is a direct evolution of the ref. 5208. Both are essentially alike, save for the addition of the split-seconds mechanism in the ref. 5308P.
Like all of Patek Philippe’s top-of-the-line grand comps, the ref. 5308P is an imposing and heavy watch that makes a statement on the wrist (unlike the relatively compact ref. 5330G World Time created for the same event). And with the “rose-gilt opaline” dial, this is also visually striking and definitely hard to miss.
Though it might seem similar to the ref. 5208, with only an additional seconds hand to set them apart, the ref. 5308P incorporates some interesting technical tweaks, including a revised isolator mechanism for the split seconds.
Still, like the ref. 5208, the ref. 5308P is a modular grand complication with the perpetual calendar and split-seconds chronographs made up of modules stacked up under the dial. This is arguably a less sophisticated solution then an integrated chronograph (a perpetual calendar is conventionally a module regardless).
The ref. 5308P has a dial in “rose-gilt opaline”, a shade that’s been popular at Patek Philippe recently and also found on the ref. 5935A World Time Chronograph.
Because the ref. 5308P is descended from the ref. 5208, both are identical in terms of the dial. The ref. 5308P retains the calendar windows arranged in an arc on the upper edge of the dial, along with the two chronograph registers flanking the constant seconds and moon phase at six.
The ref. 5308P stands apart from its less complex counterpart with two subtle details, the first being the pusher at four that controls the split-seconds hand, which is its second distinguishing second element.
The ref. 5308P has a 42 mm case in platinum, giving it the same diameter as the ref. 5208. However, because of the addition of the split-seconds mechanism, the ref. 5308P is notably thicker at 17.71 mm.
The case styling, however, remains unchanged from the ref. 5208. The lines of the case are rounded and clean, with its most notable feature being the “pierced”, open-worked lugs.
The ref. 5308P is powered by the R CHR 27 PS QI, an evolution of the R 27 minute repeating calibre introduced in 1989. The automatic winding and striking mechanisms are visible on the back, while the other complications are module plates under the dial.
There are two such modules, one for the instantaneous perpetual calendar, while the other is the split-seconds chronograph. Although the addition of a split-seconds might seem like a modest achievement on paper, it required 80 additional parts and a string of tweaks across the movement, amongst them a thicker mainspring to handle the extra energy needs of the chronograph.
More notable are two features of the split-seconds mechanism: an anti-backlash wheel with integrated sprung teeth along with a newly-developed isolator device that is thicker and presumably more robust.
Key facts and price
Patek Philippe Quadruple Complication Limited Edition Tokyo 2023
Diameter: 42 mm
Height: 17.71 mm
Water resistance: Not water resistant; dust and moisture proof
Movement: R CHR 27 PS QI
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, minute repeater, mono-pusher split-seconds chronograph, an instantaneous perpetual calendar with moon phase
Frequency: 21,600 beats per hour (3 Hz)
Power reserve: 38-48 hours
Strap: Alligator with platinum folding clasp
Limited edition: 15 pieces
Availability: Only at Patek Philippe retailers and boutiques in Japan
For more about the Watch Art Grand Exhibition Tokyo 2023, visit Patek.com.