Now 15 years old, the IWC Portugieser Perpetual Calendar was almost always a 44.2 mm watch powered by a 7-day automatic movement (though IWC installed the same movement in the smaller, 42.3 mm ref. 5022 for several years).
For Watches & Wonders 2020, IWC debuts the all-new Portugieser Perpetual Calendar 42 that’s simpler and far more affordable.
Instead of the long-standing 7-day calibre, the Perpetual Calendar 42 is powered by a simpler but nevertheless robust movement with a more conventional 60-hour power reserve. The new calibre is also thinner, resulting in a case just 13.8 mm high, versus 14. 9 mm before.
And as the model name implies, the Perpetual Calendar 42 has a 42.4 mm case, which is available in pink gold, or stainless steel – a first for the regular collection. Until now, with the exception of a 2014 limited edition, IWC has only ever offered the Portugieser Perpetual Calendar with a gold or platinum case.
All of that means making the perpetual calendar is significantly more affordable – the steel version costs half of the 7-day model in 18k gold.
An unusual perpetual
While the dial retains the traditional perpetual calendar configuration with three sub-dials for the calendar – making it cleaner and more legible the the 7-day version – it also includes a central seconds hand, which is extremely uncommon on a perpetual calendar watch.
Functionally, the perpetual calendar is similar but simplified as compared to the 7-day iteration. As with all IWC perpetual calendars, the calendar indications are synchronised from the get-go and can be adjusted simultaneous via the crown – the key feature of the landmark calendar module invented by Kurt Klaus in 1985.
But there the calendar module omits the four-digit year display and the double-hemisphere moon phase. Instead, the leap year is now indicated by a small aperture within the day display while the lunar indication is a single moon as seen from northern hemisphere. Nonetheless, the moon phase retains the same, high precision, deviating by just a day after 577.5 years.
In the Portugieser Perpetual Calendar 42, the simplified calendar module is combined with the cal. 82000 for the first time, forming the cal. 82650.
The movement is significantly smaller than the 7-day cal. 52000 in the 44 mm model – 30 mm versus 38.2 mm – being a much simpler movement. Amongst the most obvious differences is the single barrel, as opposed to the double barrels of the 7-day movement.
Though it does not have a long power reserve, the movement is equally accomplished in other aspects, for instance having a free-sprung balance wheel that operates at a frequency of 4 Hz. And the cal. 82650 is also equipped with the latest generation of IWC’s signature Pellaton winding system, which has its automatic wheel, pawls and cam made of ceramic for reduced friction and extended longevity.
Key facts and price
Portugieser Perpetual Calendar 42
Ref. IW344203 (steel)
Ref. IW344202 (pink gold with a silver dial)
Ref. IW344205 Boutique Edition (pink gold with a blue dial)
Diameter: 42.4 mm
Height: 13.8 mm
Material: Stainless steel or pink gold
Water resistance: 30 m
Movement: cal. 82650
Functions: Time; date, day, month, leap year and moon phase
Frequency: 28,800 beats per hour (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 60 hours
Strap: Santoni alligator leather
Limited edition: No
Availability: In boutiques and retailers from June onwards
Price: 23,000 Swiss francs (steel) and 33,000 Swiss francs (pink gold)
For more, visit Iwc.com.
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