Recently on our Watches & Wonders predictions podcast episode, Kaz and I talked about how neglected the Portugieser lineup has been looking lately (along with the Aquatimer). We all know that IWC goes heavy on the pilots most years but the Portugieser platform has always been an interesting one that many collectors shy away from. This year at Watches & Wonders, IWC is going all out with the IWC Portugieser Eternal Calendar, a watch that accounts for Gregorian calendar leap-year rules for 400 years and has a moon phase indicator, which IWC claims to be accurate over 45 million years.

I mean, that’s one heck of an introduction for IWC’s flagship release at Watches & Wonders. None of us will ever be able to truly verify these claims but it’s incredible to see that IWC is so heavily focused on the longevity and practicality of these mechanical functions. It’s important to note that what IWC has here is its first secular perpetual calendar, which requires specific leap years to be “skipped” in order for the watch to line up with a solar year. In theory, this watch can differentiate leap years for centuries and IWC does this with what they call the 400-years gear module that’s added to their existing perpetual calendar architecture. This new movement is the 52640 and the idea is that it will track leap years without the need for adjustment up until the year 3999.

The moon phase side of things is equally baffling. IWC claims to have added what they call a “reduction gear” that apparently only needs correction once in a 45 million-year period. That’s insane. How do you even keep track of that? I love IWC’s marketing copy on this by the way, where they state: “On that particular issue, however, you’ll just have to take our word for it.” I just love how unnecessary all of this is and I think IWC is just leaning into the absurdity while showcasing some very real technical abilities.

The watch itself is 44.4mm in diameter with a thickness of 15mm. It appears to have a very cool sapphire crystal design with an overhang to it, much like those TAG Heuer “glassbox” models we’ve been seeing lately. The dial is entirely made of glass and the components of each sub-dial are individually machined and finished before being fitted into the dial. The glass dial is also given a frosted white lacquer treatment and the case itself is platinum.

This is definitely one of those “inquire for pricing” type watches. I’m not entirely sure how many will be made but this watch shows that IWC is still capable of playing ball when it comes to massively technical movements. And, this is just one of several Portugieser novelties introduced this year. I’m definitely too broke for this. I think a lot of us are. Learn more on IWC’s official site.


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