Panerai has announced a stable of new models this week at Watches & Wonders in Hong Kong. Among a range of new Radiomirs, we find two very cool limited edition dial variations for the Panerai Luminor 1950 3 Days Titanio DLC. Panerai’s vintage-inspired 1950’s line offers a time-proven aesthetic that reflects the early days of the Luminor case and the addition of its now iconic lever action crown guard. With the 1950 3 Days Titanio DLC, Panerai is offering a “best of both worlds” solution that provides their classic Italian diver-style in a lightweight but scratch-resistant DLC titanium case.
These two limited edition Luminors differ only by dial design. The PAM617 (above, left) employs Panerai’s classic black logo sandwich dial with the distinctive 12, 3, 6, and 9 numerals and a sub seconds display, while the PAM629 (above, right) is given a “cali dial,” which mixes arabic and roman numerals in a nod to the early Radiomirs that bore a similar dial design. The PAM629’s dial is otherwise blank, with no branding, logos, sub seconds or additional text. Both dials are striking in their own way and serve to complete the vintage aesthetic of these special Luminors.
While the shape may be based on a vintage design, few brands can mix the old with the new quite like Panerai. As members of the 1950 family, these Luminors are 47 mm wide and their cases are constructed from titanium and finished with a DLC coating for scratch resistance. Within the context of a watch you or I may wear everyday, titanium is a mixed bag. It’s a beautiful metal and it’s lightweight, which is excellent in a 47 mm wide watch. But, where titanium tends to let us all down is scratch resistance. While the metal is light and strong, it’s very prone to scratching.
To help toughen up the surface of the titanium, Panerai has treated the metal to a Diamond-Like Carbon (DLC) coating finish, granting it additional resistance to general wear and tear. I love this solution, as it serves not only the general looks of the watch, but also its overall practicality as an everyday object. Finished with a solid case back and a domed sapphire crystal and 100m water resistance, the Luminor 1950 3 Days Titanio DLC looks stunning, especially on the deep brown leather strap shown in the photos.
A few years ago, Panerai started taking their movements rather seriously, and the Panerai Luminor 1950 3 Days Titanio DLC houses their hand-wound P.3000 calibre. Designed and built by Panerai in Neuchatel, the P.3000 is the same movement found in a lot of their larger watches that feature two hands or a three hands with sub seconds layout. Rocking the titular three days power reserve, the P.3000 uses two barrels, 21 jewels and ticks away at 3 Hz. Despite being a simple-looking three hand system, the P.3000 also offers jumping hour set that can be done without hacking the movement, a very handy feature for changing time zones without interrupting timekeeping.
All of these elements come together in a limited edition run of 300 units for each model and both variants will retail for a price of $11,700 USD. The combination of a classic style, high quality hand-wound movement, and a light, but practical application of modern materials make for for a rather winning formula. Are they wildly different than the many other Luminors variants we’ve seen in the past? No. But the Panerai Luminor 1950 3 Days Titanio DLC is a great-looking and detailed expression of Panerai, both old and new. panerai.com