Deftly blending its long-time pilot’s watch experience with Mercedes-AMG’s precision performance in the world of sports cars, the pair continues its affiliation that began 17 years ago in 2004 with the launch of the fake IWC Pilot’s Watch Chronograph Edition AMG. Just as AMG was born on the racetrack and is committed to driving performance, IWC is equally as committed to precision, performance and the engine inside its stealth watches.
Crafted in light-weight but incredible durable Grade 5 titanium, the new watch was unveiled today in a webcast by IWC CEO Christoph Grainger-Herr, Mercedes-AMG CEO Philipp Schiemer and brand ambassador for both companies, race car driver Maro Engel.
The matte gray of the titanium was inspired by AMG’s Selenite Grey Magno paint finish. The dial is made of carbon fiber that is derived from AMG’s aero components. The fibers are converted into textile-like threads and then woven in the heat and pressure process – making them very light weight.
Inside The carbon fiber dial copy IWC Pilot Watch Chronograph Edition AMG
Part of IWC’s Pilot watch collection, the new AMG piece is powered by the IWC-manufactured 69385 caliber mechanical column-wheel chronograph movement with two function levels that enables stop time measurements of up to 12 hours. It is the brand’s first 43mm fake IWC Pilot’s Watch Chronograph. This new size makes the watch very wearable and versatile.
In addition to chronograph functions, the automatic watch offers date and day display, a small hacking seconds hand and a screw-in crown for 6 bars of water resistance. The blend of pilot’s chronograph and racing stealth make this watch a sure-fire winner.
The sapphire case back of the watch sports the Mercedes-AMG logo and the timepiece is finished with a leather strap with contrast stitching and folding clasp. The high quality copy watch, which comes with a six-year extension to the brand’s standard two-year warranty, is available for pre-order as of today at IWC.com and via IWC boutiques and authorized retail partners. It retails for $9,100.
“IWC Schaffhausen and Mercedes-AMG share both a passion for performance and design, as well as a commitment to engineering excellence down to the smallest detail. Over the last 17 years of our partnership, IWC and AMG have shared exhilarating moments in motorsport and beyond and we have created many lasting memories for our clients,” says Grainger-Herr.
At Watches and Wonders 2021, IWC replica did what it usually does and focuses on one collection for the bulk of its releases: 2021 was devoted to the Big Pilot’s Watch. Inarguably the most popular and widely known collection by IWC, the best Swiss fake IWC Big Pilot’s Watch is the perfect place to try out a new idea like this innovative shock absorber concept.
The main focus of the IWC Big Pilot’s Watch Shock Absorber XPL replica for men is the technology behind the shock absorber, so the watch itself is a simple, three-hand, time-only piece with an ultra-clean dial and generally restrained aesthetic minimizing unnecessary distraction.
The dial (and therefore the movement) appears to float in the center of the case with an open portion around the edge allowing a clear view into the movement support structure that has been carefully designed to protect the watch against incredibly violent shocks.
The dial, movement ring, case, and strap are all monochrome black, inspired by stealth aircraft, with light grey printing on the dial and small hour markers at the case edge providing the only deviation from black aside from the shock absorber component.
That 44 mm IWC copy watch is a bright gold color that almost glows from within the case as it beckons you to look inside. Interestingly, due to the specific geometric requirements of the design, the shock absorber creates an almost square profile to frame the dial as if on an old television screen. The visual is striking to say the least, but no matter how it looks the way it functions is its raison d’être.
Quick Facts IWC Big Pilot’s Watch Shock Absorber XPL
Case: 44 x 12 mm, Ceratanium
Movement: automatic Caliber 32111, 120 hours power reserve, 28,800 vph/4 Hz frequency, SPRIN-g PROTECT system
Functions: hours, minutes, seconds
Limitation: 30 pieces, 10 produced annually
Price: CHF 80,000
Reeling back to last week’s fake IWC unveiling, it did feel like a breath of fresh air. IWC CEO Christoph Grainger-Herr’s presentation had a clear focus on the brand’s Pilot’s watches. One theme, one collection, and a message for 2021’s aviation aspirations. I think the Pilot’s Watch collection from top quality copy IWC is the brand’s best line of watches and seeing the new introductions only strengthened that belief. The star of the show was undoubtedly the stunning Big Pilot’s Watch Shock Absorber XPL concept. This modern aviation watch combines a unique construction allowing the watch to withstand forces up to 30,000g with a very clean almost minimalist dial. As a result of this clever choice, all the focus is directed to this unique construction.
Sometimes less is more
The pick of the bunch was the clone IWC Pilot’s Watch Chronograph 41 with a blue dial. It’s a return to a smaller-sized 41mm Pilot’s Watch Chronograph closer to the models IWC gave us in the ’90s. We did have the IWC Spitfire Chrono from 2019 also with a 41mm case. But this was with a solid case-back and no bracelet option. IWC only gave us a 43mm regular model in steel with bracelet and transparent case-back — until now. IWC now introduces the Pilot’s Chronograph blue dial in 41mm with a contemporary cut. While 43mm is not necessarily a problem for me, a 41mm diameter more closely resembles the charming 39mm Flieger chronograph ref. 3706 from 1994.
Ben: I agree that IWC had its day in the ’90s to mid-2000s, but the upmarket shift still doesn’t sit right with me.
Jorg: Maybe with other models, but the Pilot’s Chronograph is the IWC above all the others I have always felt was on point with value. Ever since I got into watches some twenty years ago, it’s luxury fake IWC Pilot collection that’s been unwavering in its appeal. I admire how the design allows for clear readability despite its relatively modest size. Being a pilot’s watch, it needs to tell you all you need to know at a fleeting glance. But even outside of the direct usage by aviators, it has to be wearable and work on a day-to-day basis. It’s why the ’90s version worked so well, and I feel this new Pilot’s Watch Chronograph 41 recaptures that.
Great modern-day appeal
I had the chance to check out the new 41 mm replica IWC Pilot’s Watch Chronograph and go hands-on. The sizing was perfect, but perhaps even more impressive was thoroughly modern touches for quality of life. The 5-link stainless steel bracelet is an absolute joy to wear. Initially, I had doubts about the bracelet’s design and finishing with the link adjustment system’s complexity. Yet it does wear incredibly well on the wrist. But suppose you still prefer the more era-appropriate leather strap. In that case, IWC’s proprietary EasX-CHANGE system offers the opportunity to switch between the bracelet and strap — without sacrificing the option aftermarket straps.
As mentioned earlier, its 41mm Spitfire counterpart has more vintage appeal, but this new regular model feels like the watch’s perfect contemporary version. That tremendous blue dial is a brilliant backdrop for all the familiar elements to shine. I am very particular about colors, especially blue and green. But IWC casts a hue that nails the contrast between the white hour markers and hands, with a glowing sunburst effect offset with the circular graining of the sub-registers.
Ben: At this point, I couldn’t agree more with you, Jorg. IWC produces one of the most beautiful blue shades in the industry. I used to own the IWC Aquatimer Cousteau Divers Watch ref. 3548, and it’s the best blue watch I’ve ever seen. Shame that the movement was a very poor derivative of the ETA 2892 with an inefficient rotor.
IWC Caliber 69385
Speaking of automatic movements, inside the stainless-steel case, we find another significant update in the form of the IWC’s Caliber 69385. To realize this reduction in size for the IWC Pilot’s Watch Chronograph replica for men, the brand had to scale a new movement to fit inside the case. This automatic column-wheel caliber is part of the 69000 family that also powers the current Portugieser line of watches.
The 4Hz movement offers a 46-hour power reserve and is visible through the sapphire case-back. As Rob explained in his introduction article, to maintain the proportional dial layout, IWC had to reorganize the sub-dials. The red running seconds hand, which had previously occupied the 9 o’clock register, moved to 6 o’clock. In its place, the 9 o’clock dial is now the elapsed 12-hour counter. I do not mind this change as the emblematic 6, 9, and 12 tri-compax layout with day and date indication is synonymous with the Pilot’s Chrono.
Ben: This was the perfect opportunity to switch to the more symmetrical 3, 6, 9 compax layout. Or, at least, move away from the Valjoux 7750 construction. I mean, why would you want to keep the association to an off-the-shelf caliber with an infamous rotor imbalance?
Jorg: My counter-question is why would IWC abandon something that fans of the watch associate with the Pilot’s Chronograph rather than the Valjoux movement? Overall, the new cheap copy IWC Pilot’s Watch Chronograph 41 feels like it nails the target as an aviation chronograph. But Ben still thinks the fussy Navitimer is still the ace of the skies.
A pioneering spirit has defined fake IWC Schaffhausen’s approach to watchmaking since the Swiss brand’s inception over 150 years ago. The new TimberTex strap joins an impressive series of innovations, including the early adoption of titanium and ceramics in the 1980’s — from which birthed the world’s first-ever pure ceramic watch, the 1986 aaa quality replica IWC Da Vinci Chronograph Perpetual Calendar — and the more recent creation of Ceratanium®, a mixture of titanium and ceramics.
TimberTex joins luxury fake IWC Schaffhausen’s roster of leather alternatives like steel, textile and rubber; only this time, TimberTex can truly stand in as a replacement with its veiny, grained surface that mimics that of leather.
Unlike most synthetic leathers which are often derived from plastic or petroleum, TimberTex is made of 80% natural plant fibres. Ties to nature doesn’t stop there, with the cellulose used derived from Forest Stewardship Council-certified trees grown in the non-profit organisation’s sustainably and responsibly managed European forests. Then, the straps of those best quality IWC replica watchesare manufactured in Italy with traditional paper-making techniques and coloured with natural plant-based dyes.
Finishing touches to the water-resistant straps include padding with recycled microfibre for the comfort factor and stitching via recycled thread.
Every year, AAA perfect replica IWC refreshes one of its collections: in 2017 it was the Da Vinci that took center stage at the brand’s presentation during SIHH in Geneva.
Originally introduced as IWC’s first quartz timepiece in 1969 – as part of the legendary communal Beta 21 – the collection is dedicated to Leonardo Da Vinci; legend has it that the renaissance artist and universal genius had a special passion for timekeeping. Well, so does IWC. And with its unmistakable character, the 1:1 best fake Da Vinci is definitely a modern classic.
The collection, which includes some highly complicated timepieces, features a purist dial with applied Arabic numerals, lancet-style hands, a discreet date at 6 o’clock, and the perfectly round and smooth case shape. The Da Vinci Automatic’s case includes lugs that add flavor to the style and provide excellent comfort on the wrist.
IWC offers the Da Vinci with either a Santoni alligator leather strap, which makes it a textbook dress watch, or a five-link polished bracelet for a sportier look. Both pair beautifully with the slate-gray dial that is my favorite hue in this collection. The color is very discreet and enhanced by a sunray finish.
The dial features a color-coordinated date with white numbers against a gray background. The movement powering the Da Vinci Automatic is Caliber 35111, which is based on the workhorse Sellita SW300-1.
Rattrapante chronographs replica watches, also referred to as split-seconds chronographs, are a type of chronograph with two seconds hands that allow for the ability to time multiple simultaneous events, such as runners during a race. It can also time a series of events, such as the laps a single person makes on a track. One of the hands, the so-called “rattrapante” hand, sits either directly on top of or underneath the main chronograph hand. The rattrapante hand is started and returns to zero simultaneously with the main chronograph hand. A special push-piece and an additional mechanism make it possible for the rattrapante hand to be repeatedly stopped (so that split times can be read) and then instantly brought in to renewed synchrony with the main chronograph hand by flying back to catch up with it. (“Rattrapanter” is French for “to catch again” or “to take again.”) All this occurs without affecting the motion of the main chronograph hand. Over the past few years, we’ve seen the split-second chronograph trending upward as more and more brands of all sizes add the complication to their arsenal. Here’s a selection of some noteworthy rattrapante chronographs copy watches for sale on the market today. Brown leather strap fake IWC Portugieser Rattrapante Chronograph
In 2017, IWC released a series of limited-edition Portugieser Rattrapante Chronographs to be sold exclusively at a selection of its boutique locations around the world. These locations included Geneva, Munich, Paris, Milan and Toronto/Vancouver, with each high quality IWC fake watch featuring a specific aesthetic to appeal to its targeted audience. Our favorite of these models during their initial release was the “Boutique Genève” edition (Ref. IW371221) that was limited to 50 total pieces and included an engraving of the title of Geneva’s 1602 anthem, Cé qu’è lainô, on its caseback. IWC introduced its first rattrapante chronograph to the Portugieser collection in 1995 when Richard Habring developed a split-seconds module for the iconic Valjoux 7750 movement. It uses a push-button at 10 o’clock to control the movement of the upper hand, while the lower hand is managed by the pusher at 2 o’clock. More recently, IWC released the Pilot’s Watch Double Chronograph Ceratanium in the lead-up to SIHH 2019. Steel Case Fake Breitling Navitimer B03 Rattrapante Chronograph
Breitling introduced its Navitimer 1 B03 Rattrapante 45, outfitted with the brand’s first in-house split-seconds chronograph movement, in 2017. At last fall’s Breitling Summit in London, the brand unveiled a new limited version with a “Stratos Gray” dial, available for sale exclusively at the brand’s 70 boutiques worldwide. The timepiece’s boldly proportioned, 45-mm case is made of stainless steel and is outfitted with a convex, double-nonreflective-coated sapphire crystal over the dial. The three dark gray-toned subdials (30-minute chronograph counter at 3 o’clock, 12-hour chronograph counter at 6 o’clock, and small seconds at 9 o’clock) pop against the sleek background of the main dial. The split-seconds pusher is embedded in the 3 o’clock crown. Caliber B03’s modular architecture is built upon the base Caliber B01, Breitling’s first manufacture movement, which is equipped with automatic winding, date indication, an integrated 1/4- second chronograph function, and a 70-hour power reserve. The split-seconds module added to this high-performance horological engine is comprised of only 28 parts, and is fitted between the mainplate and calendar mechanism. Limited to just 250 pieces, the black leather strap copy Breitling Navitimer 1 B03 Rattrapante 45 Boutique Edition in Stratos Gray is priced at $12,000.
When longtime fake IWC head honcho Georges Kern left his position at Richemont to become CEO of Breitling, some saw it as the latest salvo in the two Swiss brands’ historical duel for horological supremacy in the air. Here we explore in depth how both brands have made their marks on the history and evolution of pilots’ watches.
In contrast to dive watches, pilots’ watches do not have to meet any objective criteria. Good legibility under all light conditions is generally all that’s needed, and good design makes the watches what they are. A pilots’ watch looks like a high quality replica pilots’ watch. But it’s precisely the design that shows the different approaches to pilots’ watches by IWC and Breitling. Both brands base their own unique designs on their long traditions and histories. In the case of IWC, the company relies heavily on its Big Pilot’s Watch from 1940, which it, and other companies like A. Lange & Söhne, supplied to the German Air Force.
Typical features included the military-style triangle with two dots at 12 o’clock, sans-serif numerals (a plain, unadorned bar for the numeral 1), and dagger-shaped hands. Today these same features are found on every pilots’ watch made by IWC. Even the Mark XVIII follows this same family design – although its predecessor had different numerals and hands (the pilots’ watch Mark 11, built for the Royal Air Force in 1949). The only exceptions are the models dedicated to Antoine de Saint-Exupéry and his “Little Prince,” in which IWC uses serif numerals, elegant blue or brown dials, silver hands and polished bezels. A conical crown, which makes operation while wearing gloves easier, is found on many other IWC models.
But IWC really unleashes its functions. The collection ranges from a simple hand-wound watch to chronographs with and without split seconds, world-time watches, and perpetual calendars. And with its limited fake IWC Big Pilot’s Heritage Watch 55 for men, IWC even restores its original 55-mm diameter. It closely approximates the design of the original – with beige luminous material and a matte case – though it has a small seconds display (the original model had a central seconds hand).
IWC can also reveal its modern side. The brand’s Top Gun models have a matte-black ceramic case and a textile strap for a contemporary military look, while still maintaining other traditional features. For this reason, these watches are easily recognizable as IWCs. The Top Gun Miramar line presents another interesting variation of the design: a muted green dial, beige luminous material, a red hour track, a polished ceramic case and an olive-green textile strap come together to create an exciting mix of modern and retro elements.
Breitling can also look back on a long tradition of pilots’ watches. Today, its iconic Navitimer looks much as it did just a few years after its introduction in 1952, when it was given a light-colored dial. These chronographs, with their distinctive rotating slide-rule bezels, are available with numerals as well as markers. Both types are immediately recognizable as Navitimers. Traditionally, one can choose between a black leather strap with a lighter stitched seam and a seven-row metal bracelet with offset links.
Breitling offers its icon in 43-mm and 46-mm sizes. There are also models that offer various additional functions along with a chronograph: a second time zone, world-time indication, full calendar and perpetual calendar. A wide selection of limited editions varies the design – from the re-release of the first models issued in 1952 for the pilots’ organization AOPA and elegant brown or blue dials to the modern look of Blacksteel (matte-black-coated case with black hands and markers on a black rubber strap).
Breitling is also one of the manufacturers that react most strongly to prevailing trends; it introduces new models to the market almost on an annual basis. This is clearly the case with its pilots’ watches, especially in the Chronomat and Avenger lines. Both always have a rotating bezel with raised markers.
The Chronomat – with its distinctively detailed numerals on the dial, round crown, and polished markers, which originally formed a square on the dial – alters its pilots’-watch look with sporty-elegant and modern options. In addition, other bezel numerals and markers are offered in this collection. Black-coated models with black or anthracite-colored markers and hands lend the watches a touch of modern sportiness. The Airborne models represent a timeless military style with more practical-looking numerals and markers and textile straps.
But luxury fake Breitling Avenger line goes still further in this direction. Its stencil-like numerals recall the distinctive look of military equipment. And the crown and pushers are designed with function in mind. In contrast to the Chronomat collection, which features chronographs exclusively, the Avenger line also includes three-hand watches. The look can also be varied with different straps: a polished metal bracelet for classic sportiness, leather for a more retro look, a rubber strap for functionality or a textile strap for military appeal.
Breitling is known as a pilots’-watch brand to an even greater extent than IWC. At Breitling, this means maintaining traditions as well as satisfying the customer by offering contemporary designs. Watches are also produced to meet the demands of today’s pilots. For this reason, Breitling sometimes dispenses with the mechanical movements that have come to be expected in a luxury watch. This results in extremely precise multifunction watches that have countdown, alarm, and additional time-zone functions.
Watches in the brand’s Professional line typically have a functional case and large numerals at 3, 6, and 9 o’clock. Some have rotating bezels for quick calculation of flight routes. The hands are partially skeletonized to permit view of the LCD indications at the top and bottom of the dial. Breitling’s Emergency model attained fame with its integrated distress beacon. The chunky case houses a screw connector for the antenna, which wearers view as a positive feature of the watch, not a hindrance.
The newest addition to the Professional collection is the Exospace B55 for wireless connection to a smartphone. The user can set the time using the phone, as well as reading start and landing times on the phone’s large screen. With its black case and gray or blue hands with matching rubber strap, it has a modern, high-tech look.
IWC and Breitling interpret the pilots’ watch in different ways. IWC uses an iconic model from its past and rolls out a homogeneous collection of pilots’ watches with unmistakable features. Different colors and materials transform the lines and push them in different directions for an elegant or military look.
Breitling chooses another path. This brand continues to offer and produce its pilots’ watch icon, the Navitimer. Variations are offered with special editions in which the company creates a feeling of greater elegance or modernity through its use of different colors and materials. Breitling has also created collections that are inspired by contemporary or military designs. Bracelets and straps also provide numerous possibilities to modify the design.
Both brands rely on distinctive features so it’s always immediately possible to recognize the model as an IWC or a swiss movement copy Breitling. But where IWC tinkers with its design and continues to develop its look or make steps toward its origins, Breitling invents itself anew while still leaving its icon intact.
Early this year, on a special preview of 2020 IWC novelties, we took the chance to talk watch design, perfect fake IWC heritage and future, and all things watchmaking with Christian Knoop, IWC’s Creative Director. At the time, all novelties had been under strict embargo — since then the covers have been lifted and you can re-familiarize yourself with them by visiting our IWC page. Without further ado, let’s get right into it.
Christian Knoop: The Portugieser is, as you know, one of our most renowned collections, dating back to the 1930s, building on our reputation in marine chronometers. We actually started with the Royal Navy in 1917-1918, and the technology of these accurate movements have started the history of the Portugieser. A pocket watch movement was built into a wristwatch, which opened the way for us to really build our most prestigious line of the collection, dedicating it to our manufacture movements. We are excited to have the entire Portugieser collection with in-house movements with a re-design of the Portugieser Chronograph and its caliber 69. We were very cautious with the overall design with some minor changes to the case and the dial, including the addition of a new logo that we originally debuted in 2013.
Christian Knoop: It is new in the sense that the old logo had a serif in the Schaffhausen, and the new logo that now everyone sees as the current logo was a minor change based on enhanced readability. By bringing the Schaffhausen into something a bit more compact, with a sans serif font, and placing it closer to IWC, we improved the readability in applications such as sponsorships, boutiques, and so on. We also enhanced the readability of technical prints on dials, because once you don’t have the little serifs, it is better for legibility and the accuracy of printing on select surfaces. It looks crisper and more modern, which was the whole idea behind that. The new replica Portugieser Chronograph was among the last to receive this change.
In terms of functions, it’s a proper replica IWC Perpetual. It’s based on the Kurt Klaus design, it’s programmed to 2499, and it’s fully synchronized across its indications without any corrector pushers in the case. We decided to have a smaller moon phase, lower the power reserve to 48 hours from seven days, and a leap year display in place of a four-digit year display. These modifications show that the Portugieser Perpetual 42 is not competing with the 44, but rather complements it.
The hierarchy really shows when you have all these novelties next to each other: the Automatic with one, the Chrono with two, the Perpetual 42 with three, and the big Perpetual 44 with four sub-dials. Price-wise, the Perpetual 42 is also offered in steel, which is not something that we do with the big Perpetual, so this comes just below £20,000 ($22,900).
Christian Knoop: There are three key drivers behind this new line. First, the manufacture calibers. We want to have all the watches featuring crystal backs showing off our manufacture movements — except for special editions, of course. We really have an assortment of movements — with the 69 chronograph, with the 82 automatic, with the 52 Big Automatic 7 Days, with Caliber 89 flyback chrono — that is extremely strong and is on a level to allow us to provide this eight-year warranty. That’s a major achievement.
Secondly, we really wanted to make the Portugieser a contemporary line, emphasizing the fact that a watch like this has a design inspired by the past, but it nevertheless looks modern and contemporary. The yachting and brand partnership pieces (to be launched later this year) further stress this, as they are not just pointing back to the past, but make a contemporary sailing statement. It’s really about being modern with timeless aesthetics to fall back on.
Third, we have identified some strategic gaps in the collection for a small automatic. We had similar designs but in hand-wound pieces that were all-around 43mm, thus limiting the clientèle. We clearly identified what the range should be, how the larger and smaller perpetuals fit in, and how the Portugieser Automatic 40 adds beautifully to that. When you see these all sitting together, you appreciate how they all blend seamlessly with the core DNA of the Portugieser collection.
Christian Knoop: Yes, the best replica Yacht Club is now also revised, you could call it a third generation. I’m still wearing the 1st generation Yacht Club, one of the first watches I got my hands on when I joined IWC 12 years ago. We launched the first-gen in 2010, and we’ve now revised the design to make it slightly (1mm) smaller, improving wearability without losing the character. We also reviewed its proportions — to make the bezel slightly slimmer, the dial has its date moved to the 6 o’clock, producing better balance with the Yacht Club logo at 9. We also removed the big red stop hand [chronograph hand] and just installed a small red seconds hand; we believe this adds up to something that looks even classier.
Christian Knoop: Absolutely. We created this bracelet because we believe there is a potential for steel bracelet watches from IWC. Again, wearability was a key concern for us: it is a steel bracelet with a fine adjustment system that offers 5mm of travel, making this bold watch sit very comfortable on the wrist.
Christian Knoop: That’s a good question and one that I’m not able to answer to the full extent. We had 12 bar with the Ingenieurs of the time, and this sat between those and the 3 bar we had on the rest of the watches. What we found is that 6 bar, which is 60-meter equivalent is a solid level of resistance to use it for swimming, snorkeling, even for easy diving. Especially in this yachting environment, where it is designed for jumping in the water and not have to worry about the piece. It’s a robust watch.
Christian Knoop: Yeah, that’s a great-looking piece. The thing is that this look is so popular and so visible at the moment. For sure, we have thought about bringing the Ingenieur back, but this maybe is not the ideal point in time. This will appear like a kind of AP-copy to most of the people who are not that familiar with the history, and that even includes some of our customers who have been fans and connoisseurs of our other designs. We are watching this and we think about a historic Ingenieur a lot, but I don’t think it’s the right time to come up with something like this.
Christian Knoop: Yeah. As we discussed a few minutes ago, we have addressed the absence of bracelet watches and we are to be bringing out bracelets on all core collections. But we rather introduce something like the Yacht Club, than to try and go with all the others on the all-steel watches from the seventies.
Christian Knoop: Yes, we are going with two-tone for now. Titanium — we’ll have to see, as the Portugieser is not a titanium collection, but on other technical collections, I certainly wouldn’t exclude that.
Christian Knoop: When you look at our Portugieser 2020 collection, it really shows how we work. We are very serious about respecting our DNA, however, we have been able to add interesting elements to it. We create a new look, new partnerships, new movements, new complications such as the Moon & Tide — all this is within the realms of Portugieser, but with all these additions. This was exactly one of the challenges, we saw how well-established the Portugieser had already been from simple chronograph to high-end complications…. “What shall we do with that?” When you look closer, you see that we have nevertheless been able to improve upon these as individual products, where everyone thought it had already been perfect. We enhance wearability — as the size was an issue with some models — and we fill strategic gaps in terms of pricing, and then we add new design flavors with the bracelets, redesigned dials, and collabs such as that with Orlebar Brown or limited lines and boutique editions.
Christian Knoop: When you look at what IWC stands for in watchmaking, you see that we have a very strong track record of all kinds of chronographs. We are probably one of the brands selling the most chronographs in this segment, we have variations like the double and split chronographs — and so this is one thing that we built on with the Portugieser. The other major thing is, of course, calendars. We are famous for the Kurt Klaus calendar from the 1980s and since then we have continuously expanded the calendar variations that we offered and that applies to the new Portugieser Perpetual Calendar with its triple subdials.
Then you have a very interesting piece with the new Yacht Club that combines our moon phase with a moon and tide function. You have the iconic IWC moon display with both hemispheres, which is an IWC patent, and we enhanced this with spring and neap tide displays. Then at the 6 o’clock position, you have the tide display with a little rotating disc with the tide cycle of about 12 hours and 25 minutes — and when you adjust it to your current location or port location, this will run automatically and show you the next high tide. So now (see image above) the high tide would be at 06:30.
Christian Knoop: Yes, you do only use the crown to adjust all the functionalities of the Portugieser Yacht Club Moon & Tide — a nod towards the renowned crown-only setting of IWC perpetual calendars. And yes, the tide is separate from the date and the phase of the moon. The reason for that is the moon and date being intertwined — but the tide display you will want to adjust according to your current location without interfering with any other function of the watch.
Personally, I’m super excited about this piece because it connects the history of sailing and navigation from the very beginning into something that is a tangible yachting and sailing instrument. We never had this before and we do this in a very recognizable way — because I am not aware of any other watch on the market that combined the moon and the tide this way.
Late-20th-Century Design Heritage
The middle of the 20th century (read: mid-century) brought so much “newness” to the table, so much design innovation. So many things – watches in particular – produced today trace their roots to designs created during this time. IWC replica is one of the few brands which can really trace most of its current lineup to late-century (i.e. 1990’s) design ideals.
The Mark series was notably revived in this time, as well as the core of its pilot watch lineup – the Dopplechronograph included. It was in 1995 that IWC released a watch which would serve as the foundational design for the Portugieser Chronograph. That watch was the IWC Portugieser Rattrapante Ref. 3712 copy with rose gold case, a split-seconds chronograph which was powered by a rattrapante movement developed by Richard Habring (and one that was later discontinued). The watch itself would also be discontinued before a revival in 2016. But in the intervening years, the Portugieser Chronograph took its place in the IWC lineup.
1998 saw the introduction of the black leather strap copy IWC Portugieser Chronograph, a tilting pinion chronograph with applied numerals, a large – almost bezel-less – 41mm case, and a leather strap. Well, not much has changed in the 22 years since that release. In fact, in terms of aesthetics, the watch has been an absolute model of consistency. It actually takes guts to actively not change something as much as IWC did not change the Portugieser Chronograph in this time. The only other watch that I can think of in a similar vein is the Omega Speedmaster Professional, but there are practical reasons behind its stability – namely a lot of red tape associated with it keeping its NASA flight qualifications. Well, the IWC Portugieser Chronograph is no space watch, and has no restrictions leveled upon it to maintain its appearance. The watch just works, and IWC knows it, which is why it has remained the way it has for 22 years.
For the first 21 years of production, the watch was powered by the Valjoux/ETA 7750 movement. At some point, the supply of movements also came from Sellita. As these were not in-house calibers, they sat concealed behind a closed caseback. That notwithstanding, The best replica IWC is well known for the work it does on its ebauches, often adjusting and regulating non-in-house movements to great levels of accuracy and performance. In the years since the release of the Portugieser Chronograph, the watch has become arguably the most popular watch in the Portugieser lineup and can very well be considered an icon in its own right.
It is absolutely the special year for Portugieser of IWC this year. Many new models of Portugieser have been released, including simple three hands, 7 days power reserve, chronograph, complicated tourbillon and Perpetual Calendar. All these new Swiss IWC Portugieser copy watches offer big surprise to us. What’s more, the classic Portugieser has eventually been fitted on the steel bracelet.
IWC Portugieser has attracted numerous loyal fans. But why hasn’t IWC fitted the classic Portugieser with steel bracelet?
In my opinion, it is because that the special model is conservative. IWC wants to upgrade its popular collection gradually. In 2018, IWC owns its self-manufactured movement. We will feel amazed when seeing the movement from the transparent case back. Finally, now we have the opportunity to enjoy the blue hands fake IWC with steel bracelet.
After being fitted with the steel bracelet, the tone of the classic IWC Portugieser has been entirely changed. Now it looks more dynamic and youthful. It is more suitable for casual occasions.