Seventy years after its creation, the Luminor, Panerai’s most recognizable model—with its cushion-shaped case, crown-protecting bridge and namesake luminescence—is getting a tribute befitting an icon. The Swiss watchmaker has declared 2020 “The Year of Luminor” and is celebrating the timepiece with a trio of ultra-luminous Luminor Marina models that come with an unprecedented 70-year warranty.
“More than 18 months ago, we decided we wanted to pay tribute to what has been done in 1950: the creation of the cushion case and luminescent indexes,” Panerai CEO Jean-Marc Pontroué said days before the opening of the virtual edition of Watches & Wonders, the luxury watch fair that was slated to take place in Geneva April 25-29 before Covid-19 derailed the physical event.
“How do you speak about Luminor celebrating 70 years without making it a normal anniversary?” he added. “The idea is we want to spend more time with our customers, speak about brand values—we give you 70 years of guarantee on your models. That gives you enough time to enjoy your watch.”
The collection of new Luminors is led by the Luminor Marina in a 44 mm micro-sandblasted titanium case (PAM01117). The $19,000 model glows with an extraordinary degree of luminescence: A next-generation version of highly luminous Super-LumiNova material (known as “X1”) appears not only on the dial, but also the stitching of the strap, the crown, the crown-protecting bridge and the lever.
Likewise, the new Luminor Marina Carbotech 44 mm (PAM01118) displays the same extra luminosity. The textured Carbotech used on the case lends the $16,000 model—a limited edition of 270 pieces, available exclusively at Panerai boutiques worldwide—exceptional lightness and resistance to stress and corrosion.
The Luminor Marina Fibratech 44 mm (PAM01119) differs from the Carbotech limited edition in one significant way: The material used for the casing, Fibratech. Made from volcanic basalt combined with mineral fibers that are bonded with polymers, the material has never before been used by a watchmaker. The $19,000 model also comes in a limited edition of 270 pieces, available exclusively at Panerai boutiques worldwide.
In addition to their 70-year warranties, the three models noted above are all powered by automatic winding P.9010 caliber, entirely designed and developed by the Panerai Manufacture in Neuchâtel.
Panerai’s other spring 2020 releases include a $16,000 Luminor Marina Fibratech 44 mm edition (PAM01663) that features a blue dial (and will be a part of the brand’s core offerings), and a special edition from the brand’s Submersible range—limited to just five pieces—that will give Panerai lovers an opportunity to join explorer Mike Horn, a long-time Panerai ambassador, on an expedition to the Arctic.
For $190,000, buyers get not only the Submersible EcoPangaea Tourbillon GMT – 50 mm, which comes encased in steel that’s been recycled from the 35 mm drive shaft of Horn’s sailing vessel, the Pangaea, but also a once-in-a-lifetime experience with one of the world’s leading adventurers.