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SIHH 2015: IWC Portugieser Grande Complication

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It has been 75 years since the Portugieser collection was launched, and IWC had decided to mark this milestone by giving the Portugieser Grande Complication a face-lift. Subtle changes were made to this flagship model, to give it a more subtle and contemporary image.

The IWC Portugieser Grande Complication, in platinum.

The IWC Portugieser Grande Complication, in platinum.

In terms of aesthetics, there has been several changes to the Portugieser Grande Complication. The dial, for instance, is more elegant and simple as the motif of the globe has been removed. Other subtle changes include a complete railway track marker, a different engraving on the caseback, as well as some modifications to the lugs. Although the differences may be seemingly simple, the combination of all the changes allows the new Portugieser Grande Complication to become more elegant and classy.

The IWC Portugieser Grande Complication, in red gold.

The IWC Portugieser Grande Complication, in red gold.

The watch, featuring 20 functions and display, is powered by the Calibre 79091. The self-winding movement features a power reserve of 44h, and a staggering 659 mechanical components. The Portugieser Grande Complication features many complications, not limited to a chronograph, a perpetual calendar, a moonphase, as well as a minute repeater. It is not an easy feat, but IWC has managed to combined all these functions seamlessly into a movement.

One interesting thing to note would be the minute repeater. As mentioned on the previous article on IWC’s Portugieser Minute Repeater, the folks took nearly 50,000 hours to develop and perfect the minute repeater complication.

The IWC Portugieser Grande Complication's caseback.

The IWC Portugieser Grande Complication’s caseback.

As per the Grande Complications featured on many IWC watches, this one has got the same perpetual calendar mechanisms that is programmed to the year 2499.  the calendar will require correction on just three occasions (in 2100, 2200 and 2300), when the leap day that would normally occur is omitted. Also, the moonphase display only goes out of sync by a day once every 122 years. Even though it is seemingly complicated, it is operated via the crown.

The IWC Portugieser Grande Complication comes in two variants: either in platinum or red gold. For the former, it comes with a leather strap that contains platinum thread in the stitching. Similarly for the latter, it is accompanied with a leather strap that contains red gold thread in the stitching. Each variant only comes in 250 pieces.

 

Specifications from Press Release

IWC Portugieser Grande Complication

Features:

Mechanical chronograph movement

Perpetual calendar with displays for the date, day, month, year in four digits and perpetual moon phase

Stopwatch function with hours, minutes and seconds

Minute repeater for hours, quarters and minutes

Small hacking seconds

Special back engraving

Limited edition of 250 watches each

 

Movement::

Calibre: 79091

Frequency: 28,800 A/h / 4 Hz

Jewels: 75

Power reserve: 44 h

Winding: Automatic

Watch:

Materials:

Ref. IW377601: case in platinum, silver-plated dial, black alligator leather
strap by Santoni with stitching and folding clasp in platinum
Ref. IW377602: case in 18-carat red gold, silver-plated dial, dark brown
alligator leather strap by Santoni with stitching and folding clasp in 18-carat
red gold

Glass: sapphire, arched edge, antireflective coating on both sides

Water-resistant: 3 bar

Diameter: 45 mm

Case height: 16.5 mm

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