Patek Philippe launched Ref. 2526, its first automatic model, in 1953 and ceased production in 1960. It has become an iconic piece among collectors in today's market due to the classic and handsome appearance of the enamel dial.
This model features the 12-600AT movement, an engineering marvel which made its debut at the 1953 Basel Fair. As the first automatic movement made by the firm, its debut was delayed until the Hans Wilsdorf's 1933 patent for a full-rotation self-winding movement expired. At the time of its release, it was one of the most highly-jeweled calibers for a time-only watch produced by Patek Philippe, or indeed any firm.
For further discussion of the launch of Ref. 2526, see Reardon, J. Patek Philippe in America, p. 154. Examples of Ref. 2526 are illustrated in Huber, M. & Banbery, A., Patek Philippe Wristwatches, pp. 213 and 216-7. Cal. 12-600 is illustrated on p. 214 of the same text.
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