Fresh to the market and offered in excellent condition, the present extremely rare white gold third series reference 2526 is one of the best examples known to date. Furthermore, the white gold case is confirmed by the Extract from the Archives.
The white gold reference 2526 is the rarest of all the versions of this classic model, justly famous for its very appealing ivory-coloured enamel dial. Around 2400 pieces were made in yellow gold, 360 in pink gold, 70 in white gold and 70 in platinum. According to research, although the same quantity were made of each in white gold and platinum, the white gold version is actually rarer than the platinum cased version today. Only around 20 white gold examples have been so far discovered whereas 24 platinum watches are now known publicly. The present watch is without doubt one of the finest examples of the reference in white gold to be seen on the market for some considerable time.
Reference 2526, introduced in 1953, was the landmark model to be given the privilege to house the firm's first automatic calibre ever, the now famous 12-600 AT. This state-of-the-art calibre with the main spring wound through the oscillating movements of a massive 18K gold engine-turned rotor is seen by many as the most lavishly finished automatic movement ever conceived by any manufacturer. The calibre 12-600 AT was granted Swiss patent No. 289758 in 1953 for "a self-winding mechanism for a wristwatch movement using the energy supplied by a rotary mass causing an eccentric part to transmit a swinging movement to an organ of the mechanism".
The cases of the reference 2526 were all made by the Geneva master casemaker F. Baumgartner, whose punch mark of number 2 in a key is found inside the back. The most distinguishing features of the 2526 case are its screw back for water-resistance and the beautiful cast gold crown with opposing “PP” design.
With its attractive combination of a state of the art movement, the white gold case and highly attractive enamel dial, the present watch is a superb trophy for the collector of vintage Patek Philippe.
Other examples of reference 2526 are illustrated in : Patek Philippe Wristwatches by Martin Huber & Alan Banbery, first edition pp. 168-169, second edition pp. 213, 216-217.