First introduced in 1984, the Portofino has been one of IWC’s most popular collections, catering to both men and women. The design is timeless with an elegant round case and discreet dials. Available in several styles, from a classic three-hander to a complex monopusher chronograph, the Portofino came in several sizes. And today, seemingly out of nowhere and in the middle of the summer holidays, IWC launches a new diameter and new colours for the Portofino Chronograph.
The IWC Portofino collection has always revolved around clean, classically styled dress watches with uncluttered, simple yet handsome designs. The style of the Portofino has always been quite restrained. Sizes run from a petite 34mm to a quite masculine 45mm diameter, with the Portofino Hand-Wound Eight Days, for instance.
Today IWC brings a new case size to the Portofino family and simultaneously introduces three variants. The 39mm diameter case comes in stainless steel and is a classic two-register chronograph. As mentioned there’s a choice of three specific references. The two most classical Portofino Chronograph 39’s have a black sunray-brushed or a silver-plated dial, both with gold hour markers and hands. The final novelty has a luscious green dial with again a sunray-brushed finish and paired with what we assume are rhodium-plated hands and markings.
All three dials are clean, very legible and feature details such as a 30-minute chronograph counter and small seconds subdial with a subtle contrasting ring and slender hour markers. Time is indicated with leaf-shaped hands for the hours and minutes, and both subdials. The central chronograph seconds hand is shaped like a needle. In typical Portofino style, the 12 and 6 o’clock hour markers are Roman numerals, although here they’re cut away due to the sub-registers.
Inside the new Portofino Chronograph 39 is IWC’s 79530 automatic chronograph calibre, which is based on the Valjoux 7750. This is a familiar movement, as it was THE movement for the Portugieser Chronograph for more than two decades! It runs at a frequency of 28,800vph (4Hz) and has 44 hours of power reserve. Although not visible due to the closed caseback, the movement features perlage and Côtes de Genève decorations. The chronograph starts, stops, and resets with traditional mushroom-shaped pushers, a classical element for the Portofino.
The new IWC Portofino is fitted with black leather straps with a stainless steel pin buckle. All three references are priced at USD 5,900 and are available through retailers and boutiques now. As soon as we can get our hands on these, we’ll be back with our hands-on review!
For more information please visit IWC.com
Technical specifications – IWC Portofino Chronograph 39
Case: stainless steel – 39.0 mm diameter x 12.7 mm thick – closed caseback – convex sapphire crystal, anti-reflective coating on both sides – water-resistance 30m
Dial: classical styled silver-plated, black or green dials – hands and markings in gold (black and silver) or rhodium plated (green) – two-register chronograph display with 30-minute counter and central seconds hand – hours, minutes, small seconds, chronograph
Movement: IWC 79350 calibre, modified Valjoux 7750 – self-winding – 4Hz frequency – 31 jewels – 44h power reserve – Côtes de Geneve, perlage – hours, minutes, small seconds, chronograph with 30-minute counter – hacking seconds
Strap : alligator strap in green, brown or black – no mention yet if it comes on a tang buckle or deployant clasp