Just announced from Panerai is a new Luminor 1950 watch with an engraved hunter-style case made for historic British gunmaker Purdey. Panerai has previously worked with Purdey who is also under the Richemont group, and these new models are themed on Africa’s “Big Five” animals. The “hunter-style” case, which means it has a protective metal cover over the dial that opens on a hinge, is not only thematically appropriate for a collaboration with a gunmaker, but also provides a large space for the hand-engraved animal motifs. As a co-branding exercise, the Panerai Luminor 1950 Sealand for Purdey seems like a very coherently conceived and executed product with a classical but macho appeal.
The Panerai Luminor 1950 Sealand case has been been the canvas for other engraved Panerai watches – and mostly animal-themed, such as the “Year Of The Monkey” watch that we covered here. Panerai actually has a larger collection of Panerai for Purdey watches, but this specific collection focuses on the Big Five of Africa’s “game animals,” namely, the lion, leopard, buffalo, elephant, and rhino. Gun engraving has a long tradition and distinctive style that we have seen work quite well on watches before, such as the engraved Rolex watches by Madeworn (hands-on here).
Panerai explains that the the engravings are first outlined in powdered chalk or magnesium powder, and then hand-engraved with a burin – requiring more than a week of work. The pattern found around the perimeter of the engraved area is apparently inspired by African artwork and is realized in gold inlay – along with very prominent branding of “Panerai for Purdey.” The artwork itself is in a classic style similar to that often found on ornate hunting rifles like those produced by Purdey.
The Sealand case is typically 44mm wide and water-resistant to 100m. Like other Sealand watches, the Panerai Luminor 1950 Sealand for Purdey models run Panerai’s automatic P.9000 movement that operates at 4Hz with a 3-day power reserve and is found across a range of Panerai offerings. We expect that the movement will be visible through a display caseback, as on other Sealand watches. Panerai has not provided images of the dial for this watch, but it will probably be in line with similar watches in their lineup, as seen above. A black rubber strap option is included, but the attached water-resistant calf leather strap will pair best with a safari suit and boots.
Guns + wild animals + hunting + large, heavy, expensive Panerai watch… If you need a shot of classy, old-timey testosterone, this seems like an good option for those with the budget. This round of new Panerai Luminor 1950 Sealand for Purdey watches will be limited to 80 numbered pieces and priced at £20,500 each. They will be available only at the Purdey Mayfair boutique and online at purdey.com starting November 17, 2016. panerai.com