Panerai Leans Traditional with the Radiomir Officine PAM01385

A limited edition that references the original prototype.

Pared back in style, this vintage-inspired limited edition from Panerai takes a simple approach in revisiting a historical design. With a faux-aged dial colour and conical crown, the Radiomir Officine PAM01385 celebrates the anniversary of the original Radiomir prototype of 1935. Priced well at just over US$5,000, it’s a limited edition with just 300 examples being made. 

Initial thoughts 

The execution of this is clean and will please those who appreciate historical Panerai design. There is nothing added on that doesn’t need to be there, and there are small details which play to those who know their Panerai history. It’s not an exact remake of a vintage model, but has a functional aesthetic that sticks to the spirit of the originals.

As an aside, while I’ve never been a fan of mock ageing, the “tropical” dial is an even colour that doesn’t have a fake gradient to it, and so it can arguably be seen as a simple colour choice, rather than recreating faded pigment. 

Another notable detail is the 45 mm case. Oversized by most standards, it’s actually more compact than the average historical Radiomir as well as modern-day remakes, which were usually 47 mm. This makes it more wearable, while still looking big enough to retain the Panerai feel.

Given the historical background of this design, and the appealing, no-frills design, the price of US$5,400 is good value, particularly when compared against Panerai models like the Radiomir California. With just 300 pieces being made it won’t be seen everywhere, but the fact that it is only available through the online store, means it’s accessible for everyone.

Archival design

The genesis of the Radiomir Officine PAM01385 is found in Panerai’s archives: a receipt dated October 24, 1935 that documents the production of the first Radiomir prototype. Named after its radioactive, luminous dial, the Radiomir was produced by Rolex for Panerai and supplied to the Italian navy as a diving instrument. Along with “Radiomir Panerai” and the conical crown, this exemplifies Panerai’s signature watch before its introduced the recognisable crown locking system of the Luminor.

Though the PAM01385 is not a like-for-like remake of that prototype, it certainly stays close to its origins.

Inside the 45 mm steel case is a brown dial with a subtle texture and stamped hour markers filled with Super-Luminova that are a nod to historical “sandwich” dials. There is no clutter on this dial, allowing the texture and construction to be the focus. And the segmented hour hand will speak to collectors of vintage Panerai, as they are likely to recognise it from historical watches. 

Inside is the hand-wound P.6000, the brand’s entry-level in-house movement that has very few frills. Powered by one large barrel that provides 72 hours of power reserve, it only has 110 components and offers very little in the way of aesthetics, which is of little consequence here due to the solid caseback. 

Key facts and price

Panerai Radiomir Officine

Diameter: 45 mm
Height: Unavailable
Material: Steel
Crystal: Sapphire
Water resistance: 100 m

Movement: P.6000
Functions: Hours, Minutes, small seconds
Winding: Manual wind
Frequency: 21,600 beats per hour (3 Hz)
Power reserve: 72 hours

Strap: Brown calf skin with pin buckle

Limited edition: 300 Pieces
Availability: Available online at Paneria’s E-Boutique
Price: US$5,400 (excluding taxes)

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