Introducing the new IWC Portofino 39 watches
Monday - 09 August 2021
A new size for the IWC Schaffhausen Portofino watch collection has entered the game. Meet the three new stainless steel models measuring a compact 39mm diameter. The three new Portofino 39 models present themselves with a bicompax chronograph dial and come in a sunray-brushed forest green, a sunray-brushed black and a silver-plated variation.
To change the case size of a watch is no mean feat. It’s not as simple as it may sound. First of all, it changes the entire look of the watch. It will either create more wrist presence or shrink to a more manageable size – and these differences are crucial to the success or downfall of a luxury watch. And when collectors have committed and invested in a watch for so long, striking this balance is the difference between keeping the loyalty of an audience or putting them off completely. Everything from the size of the hands and indexes must be reworked when changing the shape of a watch case. The dial of the timepiece must not feel too sparse, nor should it become too cluttered. Luckily for IWC Schaffhausen, making these changes can be done to the highest level. Thought, care and consideration of proportions come as second nature to the manufacturer, as well as a deep understanding of how these principles all affect the overall look and feel of a watch.
Clean, crisp, compact…
IWC has recently unveiled a newly sized Portofino watch, housed inside a 39mm size, the three new models which come in a silver, green and black bi-compax chronograph design, feature counters based on a north-south axis. The watch is cleaner and more compact, extending on the brand’s range of dress-orientated watches nicely. The Portofino watch collection by IWC has always revolved around handsome, classically styled dial designs and simple, uncluttered layouts, and the new range of 39mm Portofino watches continue in the same vein, albeit with an interesting lineage of colours. There are various sizes in the current Portofino watch collection, of course. Take, for example, the petite 34mm models for women, right through to the masculine-infused 45mm models like the Portofino Hand-Wound Eight Days.
The new releases carry off a whole new character. The reduction of the case dial from the similar 42mm model to a 39mm diameter is drastic yet somehow IWC manages to achieve a simpler and more pared down design. Set to the same width as the 43mm model, however, are the straight lugs. A mirror polished bezel is also slim enough to open up the dial to its full potential, with a detailed minute track around the periphery of each dial proving easy to read. The dials are presented in a sunray-brushed black, a sunray-brushed green and a silver-plated version. The slim stick hour markers are joined by a traditional Roman numeral at 12 and 6 o’clock and the central hands are a beautiful dauphine shape. The three coloured dials are protected under a lens of anti-reflective and scratch-resistant sapphire crystal glass and feature a small seconds dial at 6 o’clock, balanced by a 30-minute counter at 3 o’clock.
The dial design of the new Portofino 39 watch replaces the day-date feature of the larger 42mm model, achieving a more spacious design. The chronograph functions are easy to activate thanks to the prominent pushers on the side of the case which are as smooth as butter to operate under the fingertips. The azurage treatment of the chronograph counters differs from the multi-finish treatment of many other previous models from the Portofino range.
The solid caseback of the new IWC Portofino 39 is subtly vintage-inspired and is paired with a set of piston-style pushers and an imminently manageable case depth of 12.7mm. Inside the case is the Calibre 79350 automatic chronograph movement, which offers up an impressive 44-hour power reserve and beats at 28,800 vibrations per hour. Its architecture is based on the Valjoux 7750 and features perlage and Cotes de Geneve decoration to its hand-assembled elements.
Thoughts on the new IWC Portofino 39
Undeniably, the silver and black-coloured dial options belonging to the new slew of IWC Portofino watches are the more classic looking of all three. The silver-plated and sunray-brushed black dial options are endowed with golden elements that evoke a luxurious finish, especially when paired with smart, formal or elegant attire. The luscious green dial, although not vibrant, is rich in tone and definition. Its markings, carried inside this all-new size, will appeal to those who like their watches to show off a little flair and finesse. All three models are finished on traditional leather bands. The green dialled version is executed on a matching green leather band with a stainless steel buckle. The silver dial version is completed on a brown leather strap – the black on a matching black alligator leather strap. For more information on any of the three new IWC Portofino 39 watches, call our Jura Watches team today on 01335 453453
Technical Specifications of the new IWC Schaffhausen Portofino 39 watches
- Case: Stainless steel – 39mm diameter – depth: 12.7mm – convex anti-reflective sapphire crystal glass front – closed caseback – 30-meter water-resistant
- Dial: Sunray-brushed black / sunray-brushed green / silver plated – gold/rhodium-plated hands – gold/rhodium plated stick hour markers – Roman numerals at 12 and 6 o’clock – 30-minute chronograph counter at 12 o’clock – small second counter at 6 o’clock – outer minute track
- Movement: Self-winding – Calibre IWC 79350 – modified from the Valjoux 7750 – 44-hour power reserve – 28,800 v.p.h – 31 jewels - Cotes de Geneve and perlage decoration – hours, minutes, hacking seconds, 30-minute chronograph, small seconds
- Strap: Alligator leather strap – brown/green/black – stainless steel fastening
- Price: £5,150