Watches: Panerai Radiomir 1940 Chrono Monopulsante 8 Days GMT

By Thierry Ané on November 23, 2013

Panerai is truly a brand for collectors. It is the only brand whose aficionados have a name: the “Paneristi”. Let’s face it, for the neophyte, all the models look the same! The fact that differences have to be found in small details is precisely what makes these timepieces so interesting for the informed eye.

Panerai is clearly aware that its followers are well documented and so far, the Officine has always been able to introduce new models so clearly rooted in the brand’s history that they are revered by the Paneristi and sell like hot cakes.

It is certainly not with the two new Radiomir 1940 Chrono Monopulsante 8 Days GMT models that Officine Panerai will disappoint its loyal admirers. Both watches are a pure delight for advanced connoisseurs.

These Special Edition watches feature the Radiomir 1940 case that Officine Panerai re-launched last year. It seems to be a hybrid of Panerai’s well-known Radiomir and Luminor watch cases. Indeed, the strap attachments and proportions are similar to the Luminor 1950 but strangely the iconic crown-protection device is missing. In fact, this hybrid case refers to a period in Panerai’s history, the 1940s, when the cushion-shape Radiomir case with wire loop strap attachments was evolving into the Luminor 1950 case: the transformation was not compete yet!

This very special 45 mm case deserved an equally special movement. The brand opted for the manufacture manually-wound P.2004/10 calibre that offers an eight-day power reserve thanks to the presence of three barrels. A linear indicator on the dial displays the running time remaining before the watch requires winding. This movement also features a single-button chronograph with vertical clutch and column wheel. The push-piece at 8 o’clock controls the start, stop and reset functions. This impressive calibre also indicates a second time zone by a central hand with an a.m./p.m. indicator in one of the chronograph’s counters.

The high-end finish of this calibre can be admired through the sapphire case back. In order to provide a better view of the intricate mechanism, the bridges have been skeletonized in a very contemporary way.

The material of the case is the first difference between these two Radiomir 1940 Chrono Monopulsante 8 Days GMT models. Reference PAM00502 is in red gold while the PAM00503 version is in white gold. The former is fitted with a dark brown alligator strap and the latter comes with a light brown alligator strap. Both models feature a folding buckle in the same gold colour as the case.

Although both dials use Panerai’s trademark sandwich construction with SuperLuminova, they are aesthetically quite different. With a satiné soleil finish, the dial of the red gold model is brown with oversized “6“ and “12” numerals and bar hour markers. The black dial of the white gold model also presents a satiné soleil finish but has a more minimalist design: the two big numerals are replaced by bars and dots are used for the rest of the hour markers.

With these two models Panerai continues to write its history with extreme coherence and offers once again a demonstration of its Swiss horological talent and Italian design understanding.