Panerai unveils the 2020 new Luminor at Watches and Wonders
Panerai is celebrating this year a remarkable anniversary: the Luminor turns seventy. This milestone virtually assigns the brand a privileged role within the Richemont Group, during the first edition ever of Watches and Wonders. We did anticipate we are unfortunately unable to provide any hands-on pictures, nor share the outcome of our ordinary touch and feel sessions. Nonetheless, the Italian brand has released a list of new products (and Services) so stunning, they live up to the brand's expectations, represented by the motto "Laboratorio di Idee."
The new products aim at strengthening the leadership of Panerai, through the 2020 new Luminor collection, among the most innovative market players. The brand thus gears towards fans of advanced materials and new technologies while boosting Customer Service and Experience to unprecedented levels. The new brand's vision confirms the "Laboratorio di Idee" which once mostly referred to new products, has extended to mean innovative Services and Customer Experience too.
The "Laboratorio di Idee" of new materials: Carbotech ™, Fibratech ™, DMLS
The above list includes two current technologies and a whole new one. Carbotech™ is a Panerai's hallmark and extensively adopted throughout the collections since it first appeared on the Submersible PAM 616, back in the days. The DMLS, an acronym for Direct Metal Laser Sintering, is a 3D printing process that debuted on the exclusive Lo Scienziato Tourbillon a few years ago, to guarantee extreme lightness along with product robustness. Carbotech™, sandblasted titanium obtained via DMLS process, and the newcomer, the Fibratech™, are the top materials adopted on three new boutique timepieces, each produced in a limited edition of 270 pieces. On each collection, Panerai ensures a hard-to-believe seventy years of product warranty.
Product design is no different: Panerai debuts the green Super-Luminova™ X1, a new compound applied anywhere on the watch. The inner ring of the bezel, the crown-protecting device and, finally, the crown, make for the Luminor's new visual identity, especially under dim light or full dark. The three new Luminor Marina 44mm models reference PAM 1117, 1118 and 1119 boutique edition win hands down any "Lume Battle," as you can see by taking a look at the family group photos below:
No breaking news from a mechanical standpoint, since they all share the robust Panerai in-house P9010 automatic caliber. It ensures three days of power reserve and is housed within a 44mm case, across, even though they differ from each other in terms of thickness: the titanium is 15,65mm thick, while the others stop at 14,5mm. I reckon this difference is related to mechanical resistance, given it is hard to beat a fiber composite, as that's the case with Carbotech™ and Fibratech™, which potentially offer comparable performances, I assume (given the thickness). They all share a titanium case back: it is micro-sandblasted, or DLC treated according to the product variant.
The dial has a sunray finish, offered in blue, gray, or anthracite black. They also share a new patented strap, called Panerai Sportech™, whose stitching turns as green as case and dial, overnight. What a pity Panerai didn't take this chance to remove the date window and the wording "Automatic"; I can only imagine how much cleaner would have each dial looked. The new boutique editions are a nod to the so-called "PAMTRON," else said the Panerai Luminor Lab-ID reference PAM 700, which, with its 50 years of guarantee, served as a source of inspiration.
Here are the three references, listed by price:
Panerai Luminor Marina 44mm Carbotech™ PAM 01118 price: 16,000 Euros
Panerai Luminor Marina 44mm Titanium DMLS PAM 01117 price: 19,000 Euros
Panerai Luminor Marina 44mm Fibratech™ PAM 01119 price: 19,000 Euros
The rookie: Panerai patents a new material, the Fibratech™
The Luminor Marina Fibratech™ 44mm PAM 01119 visually stands out for its unusual gray color and texture. Patented by Panerai, the Fibratech™ is a compound of fibers coming from the fusion of basaltic rock and mineral additives, according to the brand's official press release.
Little we know about technical details so far, and rightly so given the brand carefully protects its patents. However, the design approach behind each new fiber composite is usually the following: to align the fibers in an assigned direction, so that once the compound has undergone a binding process under controlled pressure and temperature, it guarantees assigned mechanical resistance.
It usually has to do with boosting product resistance to traction and compression, in comparison to standard materials along with ensuring superior lightness. However, the Luminor Marina 44mm PAM0117's 100g total weight is hard to beat. We hope to have a chat with Panerai's Technical Director, Alessandro Ficarelli, soon, on this topic.
Combining different materials on a single timepiece: please welcome the Luminor PAM 01662 and PAM 01663
Last year, Panerai introduced a two-material watch when it launched the Submersible reference PAM 799. That timepiece combines Carbotech™ and BMG-Tech. The 2020 Panerai reference PAM 01662 combines sandblasted DMLS titanium with Carbotech™, the latter being adopted for bezel and crown protection device. The result is what arguably looks like a kind of "Stealth" Panerai, that shares a standard Luminor's base design, lume included. Its thickness stops at 14,2mm, and it is not a boutique product. Therefore it is not offering 70 years of warranty. The same does Panerai by introducing the reference PAM 01663.
This reference combines Carbotech™ and Fibratech™, instead, but has a slightly thicker case, at 14,5mm. I think it is one of the most appealing new Luminor 44mm, considering the beautiful smoked blue dial too. Again, I suggest Panerai explore the chance to remove the date window in the future and go for a no-frills design, especially on such technically advanced and military looking products. They both adopt the new Panerai Sportech™ velcro strap.
Here are both references, listed by price:
Panerai Luminor Marina 44mm DMLS Titanium and Carbotech™ PAM 01162 - price: 15,000 Euros
Panerai Luminor Marina 44mm Fibratech™ and Carbotech™ PAM 01163 - price: 19,000 Euros
Panerai Luminor Marina 44 mm Goldtech ™ reference PAM01112
The latest new addition to the Luminor collection is more traditional and geared towards those looking for a gold Luminor. Panerai offers a time-only version of the Luminor Marina Automatic, featuring a blue satin sunray dial coupled to Goldtech™ red gold, Panerai's in-house conceived and developed gold alloy.
Goldtech™ red gold differs from a standard gold alloy as it offers a higher percentage of copper (24%) with the addition of platinum (0.4%). The goal of the Goldtech™ is to provide owners with higher shine and better resistance to oxidation over time. The retail price of the Panerai Luminor Marina 44 mm Goldtech™ reference PAM01112 is 22,900 Euros.
(Photo credit: courtesy of Panerai)
Gaetano C @Horbiter®