Special edition watches that are only sold in boutiques or produced in limited numbers are a great way for watch brands to get fans and watch lovers excited. Exclusivity is often a big deciding factor when it comes to a watch purchase, and there’s no better way of creating exclusivity than by releasing a watch in limited numbers and especially in a colorway or design that collectors yearn for. Few watch brands are as adept at this game as Panerai is, having had a string of hits with past special edition watches. There’s the legendary Luminor 1950 PAM 127 “Fiddy” from 2002; and more recently, the Radiomir 1940 Marina Militare or PAM 587 from 2014. Now, there are three more to add to that list with the new Panerai PAM 735 Radiomir 8 Days Titanio, the PAM 736 Radiomir 1940 3 Day Acciaio, and the PAM 737 Luminor 1950 Chrono Monopulsante GMT Titanio.
To be sure, these are not brand new watches with new movements. Rather, they are different versions of existing models. But what makes them notable is their deep green dials. This is not the first time that Panerai got collectors excited with a simple color change. Last year, they did the same with four special edition watches that came with metallic blue dials. Now, let’s get into these new watches.
We begin with the PAM 735 Panerai Radiomir 8 Days Titanio, which is based on the PAM 346. This comes in the classic 45mm-wide Radiomir cushion case with distinctive wire lugs, and as its name clearly states, it is made out of titanium.
The dial features Panerai’s signature sandwich construction and is a little busy by the brand’s standards, with a date and magnifier at 3 o’clock, an “8 Days” print at 6 o’clock that proudly proclaims the movement’s outstandingly long power reserve, and a small sub seconds dial at 9 o’clock. The dial is a deep matte green and the markers and hands feature beige Super-LumiNova.
The movement within is the in-house-made, hand-wound Calibre P.2002. It has a handy power reserve of 192 hours (8 days) and features a quick zero-reset system for easy and precise setting of the time. The movement is visible through a display caseback and a neat thing about it is that it features a discreet power reserve indicator on the back of the movement. Water resistance is 100m and the watch comes with a dark brown strap stamped with the OP logo of Panerai.
Next up, we have the PAM 736 Panerai Watch Ranking Replica Radiomir 1940 3 Days Acciaio, which is based on the PAM 514. This comes in Panerai’s newer 47mm-wide Radiomir 1940s-style cushion case, which has more conventional integrated lugs. The case is stainless steel. Like the PAM 735, the PAM 736 has a deep matte green sandwich dial with beige Super-LumiNova. However, compared to the PAM 735, the PAM 736 has a cleaner dial with just a simple date display at 3 o’clock and a sub seconds dial at 9 o’clock. If you ask me, I would rather not have the date display, but I know a lot of people who would appreciate its practicality.
The PAM 736 is powered by Panerai’s Calibre P.3000, an in-house hand-wound movement that is also found in many other hand-wound Panerai models. It beats at 3Hz and has a power reserve of 72 hours (3 days). The Calibre P.3000 also has the ability to advance its hour hand by one hour increments – very useful when traveling across time zones. The movement, which is decently finished with bevels and brushed-finishing bridges, can be admired through the watch’s sapphire display caseback. Water resistance is 100m, which is fitting for a Panerai considering its dive watch roots.
The last watch of the trio, is the PAM 737 Panerai Luminor 1950 Chrono Monopulsante 8 Days GMT Titanio, which is based on the PAM 311. This particular model has Panerai’s unique 44mm wide Luminor 1950 case with the iconic bridge lever device and it is made out of titanium. The PAM 737 also has a deep matte sandwich dial, and it is easily the busiest looking of the trio because of its numerous complications.
To begin, it is a mono-pusher chronograph. The small pusher on the case at 8 o’clock activates, stops, and resets the chronograph. The PAM 737 has a central chronograph seconds hand; a 30-minute counter at 3 o’clock; a 24-hour indicator with AM/PM integrated into the sub seconds dial at 9 o’clock; and finally, a linear power reserve indicator at 6 o’clock. There is a lot to see on the dial, but fortunately the indications have practical purposes, so there is no superfluousness here.
The movement inside the PAM 737 is the Calibre P.2004, an in-house, hand-wound movement that is one Panerai’s more complicated calibers. Visible through a sapphire display caseback, the movement is finished in Panerai’s unique industrial style and owners can clearly see the column wheel mechanism. The P.2004 also features a zero-reset system for easy and precise setting of the time.
As a fan of Panerai, I have mixed feelings about these three new pieces. I do think that the matte green dials are really attractive, but I’m a bit disappointed that these watches are essentially green dial versions of existing pieces. I think it is a missed opportunity for Panerai to make more significant changes. For example, the PAM 736 Radiomir 1940 3 Days Acciaio could really do without a date display to make it stand out more from the PAM 514 on which it is based. Still, considering Panerai’s sizable base of committed devotees, I’m sure these watches will have their fans.
Apart from being produced in limited numbers, the other thing to note about these new pieces is that they are exclusive to Panerai boutiques. The PAM 735 Panerai Radiomir 8 Days Titanio is priced at $12,100 and is limited to 250 units. The PAM 736 Panerai Radiomir 1940 3 Days Acciaio is priced at $9,200 and is limited to 300 pieces. Finally, the PAM 737 Panerai Luminor 1950 Chrono Monopulsante 8 Days GMT Titanio is priced at $18,100 and is limited to 200 pieces. panerai.com
As far as history goes, in its earliest days Panerai had already used 8-day power book watches powered by Angelus movements. This was to fulfill military requirements in a bid to make the watches more reliable over a longer period of time and also, allegedly, to not necessitate constant adjustment of their time and rewinding of their motion, rescuing the crown gaskets from early wear.Speaking of which, I timed it to get you guys out of fascination: it requires about one minute and 45 minutes to fully wind a stopped motion – and boy, is that a good deal of winding! Winding is not one of the pleasurable experiences the PAM561 could offer, either. Since the crown barely extends over the plane of the concave top of the crown shield, you need to go and catch hold of the crown countless times while the sharp edge of the guard itself along with the coined edge of the crown make matters a bit less comfortable.The movement itself is in line with Panerai manufacture caliber aesthetics: it is rugged first, interesting second, and beautiful third. It is one of the very rugged-looking calibers out there, with just one enormous plate covering the equipment train and the 2 barrels, and one bridge which holds the balance wheel protected. Revealed is a massive – and I do mean huge – third wheel that’s secured by a skeletonized bridge. Deep underneath it, close to the barrel, is the centre wheel while closer to the balance wheel, and deep in the guts of this motion, is the fourth wheel and the escapement.The equilibrium wheel itself is obviously a free-sprung construction, meaning its precision is adjusted through the old-school and more elegant way of varying moment of inertia screws in the periphery of the balance wheel. Panerai clarifies the bridge behind the balance is fixed by two screws beneath that are threaded rings which turn in both directions. The purpose of this is to correct the “end-shake” of this equilibrium staff pivots. This technical solution helps the escapement to continue running more easily in case of shocks.