At this year’s SIHH, we saw several interesting Portugiesers. One that draw our attention most is the IWC Portugieser Perpetual Calendar Digital Date-Month 75th Anniversary watch which is issued in limited editions in platinium and red gold.
IWC Portugieser Perpetual Calendar Digital Date-Month boasts a perpetual calendar, a large digital date, a leap year display, as well as a chronograph with a flyback function. The beating heart of this newcomer is the IWC-manufactured caliber 89801 mechanical movement with its quick-action switch and efficient double-pawl winding system. Each night, when the date display moves forward, the switch siphons off a little of the energy, stores it and then discharges it accurately at the end of the month or year when, in addition to the date and month disc, the leap year disc also needs to be advanced. The perpetual calendar is set via the crown and it will not require correction until 2100.
The 51 jewels movement oscillates at the rapid pace of 28,800 vibrations per hour (4 Hz) and it can provide 68 hours of power reserve when fully charged.
This newcomer from the Schaffhausen-based watchmaking company is housed in a 45mm case and features an arched-edge front glass. Underneath the glass lies either silver-plated or black dial that comprises Arabic numerals as hour markers, a small seconds counter at the 6 o’clock position and the 12-hour and 60-minute counters which are placed on the opposing side, at the 12 o’clock position. A date window is situated between 9 and 10 o’clock positions, whereas a month totalizer sits between 2 and 3 o’clock position. The perpetual calendar function is completed by the leap-year window that stands just above the 30-second marker on the constant seconds counter.
From the rear, the view through the sapphire display back reveals the attractive caliber consisting of 474 individual parts. The impeccable movement has a number of amazing features, such as the styled rotor and the inset “Probus Scafusia” medallion made of solid red gold, as well as decorative blued screws, which together with the red jewels and the Geneva stripes on the plate constitute an eye-pleasing ensemble. The water resistance of the case is assured down to 30 meters (100 feet).
IWC Schaffhausen offers three models of the Portugieser Perpetual Calendar Digital Date-Month. Two are housed in 18-karat red gold cases and there is a choice between a black and a silver-plated dial (their referent numbers are IW397202 and IW397203). The third model (ref. IW397201) is housed in a platinum case and features a silver-plated dial. Depending on a model, the new IWC Portugiesers are attached to either black or dark brown Santoni alligator leather straps, each fitted with a folding clasp in platinum or red gold. The platinum variant is limited to only 25 pieces, while red gold versions are issued in 75 specimens each.
In 2015, IWC marks the 75th anniversary of the Portugieser family.