A Comparison between Patek Nautilus & Audemars Piguet Royal Oak

The Patek Philippe Nautilus and Audemars Piguet’s Royal Oak are two of the most popular names in the almost three century long history of watch making. There are quite a few similarities between these two watches from Patek Philippe and Audemars Piguet, two of the most respected watch manufacturers of our time. Both these companies are known for their tradition of manufacturing the finest luxury watches. Both these models appeared on the market during the 1970s and were created by Gerald Genta. Another similarity between these two watches is that they are the first ever sports watch manufactured by the respective companies.  The Patek Philippe Nautilus and Audemar Piguet’s Royal Oak marked the beginning of a new trend in the market with the introduction of stainless steel.  Both Nautilus and Royal Oak have evolved a great deal over the years with the introduction of models like Nautilus Moon Phase, Royal Oak Offshore, etc. However, the Patek Philippe Nautilus and Piguet’s Royal Oak are still the preferred choice for the purists.

Patek PhilippeIn the 1970s, it was possible to buy a gold dress watch for 3000 Swiss Francs. Therefore, the watch industry experts were completely awestruck when Audemars Piguet introduced the Royal Oak in 1972. The watch made its official appearance in a watch exhibition held at Basel. Four years later, in 1976, the Nautilus was introduced by Patek Philippe. The original version of Royal Oak had an Octagonal and flat shape. On the contrary, with a dimension of 42.8mm x 41.8 mm, the Patek Philippe Nautilus was a huge watch for that period of time. This is why this introductory version of the Patek Philippe Nautilus is also known as ‘Jumbo’. Caliber 28-255C and AP2121 were used by Nautilus and Royal Oak, respectively. Interestingly, both these are derived from Jaegar-LeCoultre’s caliber 920.

Both these eminent watchmakers have made several variations to their first ever sports watch. A sportier update of Royal Oak named ‘Offshore’ hit the market in 1993. Whereas, in 2006, exactly three decades after the launch of the original Patek Philippe Nautilus, the company introduced the reference 5711/1A. This version uses caliber 324 SC with their own manufactured movement.

It is never easy to pick one of these two masterpieces.  The Patek Philippe Nautilus has much higher market demand, as well as price. However, the choices may vary from person to person depending on taste. You should take a look at both of them if you are planning to purchase a high end sports watch.