Apr 29, 2017
SIHH turned out to be the Officine Panerai showground for new materials. The Italian watchmaker presented first its LAB-ID Luminor 1950 Carbotech 3 Days PAM700. The watch case is made of Carbotech, and completed with a deep black, carbon-nanotube-coated dial to absorb light and diminish reflection. Beating inside that impressive case is the P.3001/C calibre. The maker says the movement will require no lubricant for the next 50 years, owing to its two barrels being dry-lubricated; to its escapement being largely silicon; and to the next-generation, low-friction composite on the main bridges and plate, which all work to reduce the need for lubrication. The movement can be viewed through a sapphire-protected porthole, which also displays what’s left in the model’s three-day power reserve.
Another new material, BMG-tech, made its debut in the 47mm Luminor Submersible 1950 BMG-Tech 3 Days Automatic PAM00692. BMG-tech is a glass-like alloy. The first part of the name is an abbreviation of bulk metallic glass, an ultra-strong material that is lighter than steel, resists corrosion and defies magnetic fields. Most of the case is made of BMG-tech, as is the distinctive bezel that turns only one way. Only the caseback is made of titanium.
The BMG-tech watch is one of six Luminor Submersible 1950 watches Officine Panerai introduced at SIHH. Another 47mm watch, the Luminor Submersible 1950 3 Days Automatic Bronzo PAM00507, has a brushed bronze case and a beautifully contrasting deep blue dial. The appeal of this watch will be, for many, the individual character the watch will develop as seawater, heat and sweat gradually turn the bronze a rich brown colour in an irregular pattern that is a unique record of the wearer’s use of the watch. The watch is also available with a brushed titanium case, as used for the Luminor Submersible 1950 Amagnetic 3 Days Automatic Titanio PAM01305. Two smaller versions, 42mm in diameter, contrast with the hefty pieces that make up the rest of this line of watches.
The classic Luminor Submersible 1950 3 Days Automatic Acciaio PAM00682 is made of stainless steel and is water-resistant to 300 metres. The sportier Luminor Submersible 1950 3 Days Automatic Oro Rosso PAM0684 is made of red gold, has a black ceramic bezel, and is water-resistant to 100 metres.
All of the new timepieces contain the watchmaker’s new P.9010 automatic calibre. All have a date window and the distinctive Luminor seconds counter at 9 o’clock. All have the essential, dependable characteristics of a diving watch brought together by a sophisticated design. They are the result of the Officine Panerai effort to bring all aspects of its watchmaking in-house.
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Officine Panerai also brought to SIHH five collectibles made to mark the 35th America’s Cup yacht race. The official watch is the Panerai Luminor Marina 1950 America’s Cup 3 Days Automatic Acciaio PAM00727. It is a smart-looking piece, fitted with the P.9010 calibre.
The watchmaker also showed two flyback chronographs, the first and second official watches of Oracle Team USA. Each will be available in limited numbers. They prove, once again, that the practical value of Officine Panerai timepieces is as great onthe ocean wave as it is in the ocean depths.