It was a Radiomir 1940 roadshow for Panerai at Watches & Wonders last week in Hong Kong, with four new models introduced. The Radiomir 1940 embodies the purity and simplicity of the original Panerai design, with its no-frills, highly legible sandwich dial and signature cushion-shaped case.
The star of the new lineup was the Radiomir 1940 3 Days Automatic (PAM00620, below), a smaller, slimmer, steel model, compared to the typical 45-mm and 47-mm sizes. It has been scaled back to 42-mm in diameter and measures just 10.93 mm thick despite the automatic movement, thanks to an off-center micro-rotor. The PAM00620 contains the automatic Caliber P.4000, beating at 4 Hz, with twin barrels for a 72-hour power reserve. A sapphire crystal caseback reveals bridges that are as unadorned as the dial, with simple brushed finishes and a wide bridge that covers almost half the movement, making it particularly robust. Also visible is the micro-rotor, which is made of tungsten steel because of its high density. The dial is also pure Panerai, with its sandwich structure, small seconds counter at 9 o’clock, large bar hour markers and numerals at the cardinal points. The case is made of AISI 316L stainless steel, a metal particularly resistant to corrosion. All surfaces are given a dress-watch-style high polish. It is water-resistant to 100 meters.
Also measuring in at a scaled-down 42 mm is the Panerai Radiomir 1940 3 Days with the hand-wound Caliber P.1000, available in both rose gold (PAM00575) and steel (PAM00574). The steel version (below) has a striking green strap that is color-coordinated with the green Super-LumiNova on the sandwich dial.
Purists who prefer Panerai’s signature large proportions, along with a few more embellishments, will appreciate the 45-mm Panerai Radiomir 1940 10 Days GMT Automatic Oro Rosso (PAM00625 with a black dial/strap and PAM00624 with brown dial/strap, pictured below, both in rose gold). It contains Panerai’s first skeletonized automatic movement, Caliber P.2003/10. Bridges and barrels are chamfered and polished, and the outer edge of the rotor is engraved with “Officine Panerai.” The dial retains the classic simplicity of a Radiomir despite the added functions, which include a date window, day/night indicator, linear power-reserve indicator, small seconds and a second time zone – indicated with a central arrow hand. The movement has three mainspring barrels, delivering a 10-day power reserve.
Both the P.1000 and P.2003/10 calibers incorporate a seconds reset function, which zeroes the seconds hand when the crown is pulled out. The P.2003/10 has a mechanism that allows the local time hand to be adjusted forward and backward in jumps of one hour at a time without stopping the minute hand or interfering with the running of the watch. It automatically adjusts the date.
The blockbuster introduction of the show was the dramatic Radiomir 1940 Tourbillon GMT Oro Rosso (PAM00559, above and below), a 48-mm piece in Panerai’s Lo Scienziato collection. The collection pays tribute to the genius of Galileo Galilei, the medieval astronomer credited with formulating the law of isochronism. It contains the hand-wound Caliber P.2005/S, with a 30-second tourbillon escapement that rotates on a perpendicular axis instead of parallel to that of the balance wheel, a striking visual effect. The movement is skeletonized and blackened, and visible on both the dial side and through the caseback. The barrels are also skeletonized, revealing the mainsprings – two are visible on the front and one on the back. The hour markers and numerals are fixed directly onto the black flange. It will be produced in a limited series of 30 pieces.