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Porsche Design 1919 Globetimer UTC Watch Hands-On

Porsche Design 1919 Globetimer UTC Watch Hands-On Hands-On

The major new watch release for German Porsche Design at Baselworld 2019 is the Porsche Design 1919 Globetimer UTC. Germans typically prefer to use the term “UTC” (coordinated universal time) as opposed to Greenwich mean time (“GMT”) as a matter of style but, effectively, they are the same thing. Porsche Design didn’t want to merely release a GMT (UTC) watch during this new era of the brand, but rather wanted something technically interesting, exclusive, and, of course, practical. The Porsche Design 1919 Globetimer UTC is all of that.

Porsche Design 1919 Globetimer UTC Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Inside the watch is a brand new movement that Porsche Design calls “in-house.” I believe it is an exclusive movement made for them, known as the caliber WERK 04.110, that relies on a module placed over a base movement. The WERK 04.110 operates at 4Hz with 38 hours of power reserve (a bit slim for a watch at this price point, these days) and includes the local time with AM/PM indicator window, a date hand, and a second 24-hour time-zone indicator hand that can be adjusted in either direction using the pushers on the case.

Porsche Design 1919 Globetimer UTC Watch Hands-On Hands-On

The 1919 Globetimer UTC is ideally suited to being a travel watch because of its ability to adjust the UTC hand “east” or “west,” depending on your direction of travel. While dual-direction GMT watches are not new, they are relatively uncommon, and each one is a bit different. Normal GMT/UTC watches usually allow the wearer to adjust the 24-hour hand in only one direction. With each push of the buttons on the side of the 1919 Globetimer UTC case, the UTC hand moves in a full hour increment in one direction or another. Unless you are traveling to a place with 30-minute time zones, this is pretty much all the travel watch functionality you need when trying to determine the time in two different time zones at once.

Porsche Design 1919 Globetimer UTC Watch Hands-On Hands-On

What Porsche Design includes with the standard assortment of complications is the small window near 9 o’clock that serves as a day/night (AM/PM) indicator for the main time zone. This helps the wear better adjust the main time to work in coordination with the UTC hand. The dial also features the date indicated via a hand on the main dial. With this hand, the 1919 Globetimer has a full five hands from the main stem. This isn’t record-setting, per se, but it is highly uncommon and another interesting story to tell about the timepiece.

Porsche Design comments on two additional features of the WERK 04.110 movement that are important to mention. First is the fact that adjusting the UTC time does not negatively impact the performance of the movement, i.e., it doesn’t affect the accuracy of the main time. In some watches, the regulation system is paused or hampered a bit when functions are operated. Porsche Design has made it clear that operating the UTC complications will not affect timing accuracy. Moreover, the movement is COSC-Chronometer certified, adding additional value and the reassurance of timing performance.


Porsche Design 1919 Globetimer UTC Watch Hands-On Hands-On

The base of the Globetimer UTC collection is the still-fresh Porsche Design 1919 case. Porsche Design originally debuted it as part of its drive to have a more distinctive look. The 1919 is meant to be a watch that, when seen on a wrist, immediately says “Porsche Design” to onlookers. Of course, that will take some years and is dependent on the timepiece offering a unique visual experience. For the most part, that is related to the 1919’s case, which wears a bit larger than its 42mm-wide dimension might suggest. That is due to the “monolithic” cut-out lug structure that juts out from the case and is, itself, attached to a strap or bracelet. With the lugs sticking out like that and the nearly 15mm thickness of the 1919 case, the Porsche Design 1919 Globetimer UTC will look best on medium-to-large wrists.

Porsche Design 1919 Globetimer UTC Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Is the watch titanium? Of course it is — this is Porsche Design we are talking about. Actually, for 2019, Porsche Design also released an entirely 18k rose-gold version of the 1919 Globetimer UTC with a black dial. The other models include dials in blue, brown, and black in the mostly matte bead-blasted titanium case. Only the blue version comes on the matching Porsche Design titanium bracelet, with the other models being paired to a thick “genuine Porsche car” leather strap.

Porsche Design 1919 Globetimer UTC Watch Hands-On Hands-On Porsche Design 1919 Globetimer UTC Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Overall quality and construction at Porsche Design now are really impressive. The detailing on the 1919 Globetimer UTC includes a polished titanium bezel and some angles on the pushers. The textured crown is both good-looking and very comfortable to grasp. The dial is attractive and legible, even if it doesn’t immediately strike you as novel or distinctive. What I really like about the 1919 Globetimer UTC is that you really get a sense that this is a modern-engineered product, but one produced out of a long tradition of expertise and style, very similar to how the best cars feel today. A little like Porsche automobiles? Porsche Design would like to think so.

Speaking of Porsche automobiles, Porsche Design (part of the same group of companies) has been increasingly connected to the automotive part of the brand. This is a bit of a departure from the mentality of a few years ago, which was to make Porsche Design feel quite separate. In addition to various Porsche Design watches actually being directed at particular Porsche car owners, we are starting to see more design-ethos overlap between the Porsche Design watches and the German company’s world-popular vehicles, such as the 911 family.

Porsche Design 1919 Globetimer UTC Watch Hands-On Hands-On

The rear of the 1919 Globetimer UTC case has a handy chart to help you know what time zone you should be in based on your travels. (It uses reference cities.) This is, no doubt, helpful — but as a watch-lover, I want to see a view of the movement here. For me, the nicest model is that with the blue dial and the matching titanium bracelet, though if it works with wardrobe and skin tone, the brown version is very compelling. The entire aBlogtoWatch team was surprised at how much we liked the Porsche Design 1919 Globetimer UTC and felt it was worth including on our list of the top watches of Baselworld 2019. The prices aren’t bad, either, for what you get. Price for the Porsche Design Globetimer UTC in titanium on a strap is 5,950 Euros and 6,450 Euros on the titanium bracelet. The 18k rose-gold version has a price of 29,500 Euros. See more at the Porsche Design website here.

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  • H.S.M.

    I just feel this to be bland. I want a GMT in my collection, but this is not going to be the one.
    The price is OK, the execution is fine, the movement sounds interesting, but the package as a whole doesn’t tickle me in any way.
    I hate non-standard lugs. It just means I can’t put any strap on it. With this, you might pull a nato strap through those gaps, but that’s about it.

  • Swiss_Cheese

    I know it’s the name association with the cars, but whenever I hear “Porsche Design watch” or any other “(car manufacturer) watch” I tend to think: $150 quartz chronograph with more car logos than 15 year olds bedroom wall. By all means, have a watch brand maybe call it something different that doesn’t form a vehicular parallel to the $50 Jaguar watch I used to own… but hey, ‘something-something my 2c’

    • Mikita

      You’re not alone.. For me, a car name + “design” = makes the watch less attractive. Mitsubishi Fashion? Kia Glamour? Porsche Design?

      • Sheez Gagoo

        Shiguli Haute Couture

        • Mikita

          Ah, Zhiguli.. My father drove Zhiguli 7 series (2107). Actually, it belonged to my grandfather, but he had no driving license, so my father was like a driver for him. I will never forget a smell of a new Zhiguli.. I had a headache from that smell all the time we went somewhere.

      • SuperStrapper

        GMC Sweatpants Conglomerate

    • Larry Holmack

      Humm…I wonder if those shoes come in a size 14 EEEE….I’ve got big feet!!???

  • SuperStrapper

    I always assumed the preferred UTC over GMT because Greenwich isn’t thiers.
    Anyway, the brown dial is quite striking but I’m just never going to like this watch case.

  • guitardude

    I actually like the look of this watch, but it is too large. 39 or 40mm across and 12mm or so thick would have been perfect.

  • dr3

    I don’t get the car-watch thing personally. Maserati and Bulgari did an Octo together a while back. Now you can pick a ‘Maserati’ watch (non-Bulgari) at airports for a few 100. First collaboration devalued Bulgari, the cheap mass-market tie in devalues Maserati. Ferrari has similar high-end (Hublot) and low-end co-branding. Who exactly are they trying to please here?
    And don’t get me started on personal tie ins, Rolling Stones, Muhammad Ali etc etc.

    All that being said – bracelet is quite nice!

  • Jared

    it looks really cheap, like it could have been sold with a MVMT or Daniel Wellington label on it

  • Raymond Wilkie

    Watch – Car,………….I’ve never seen the connect apart from I quite like Porsche ( especially the 911 ) the watch is just ugly. stick one in the glove compartment of the car as a bonus gift for the buyer.

  • PR

    That Ti bracelet….wow. Rest of the watch doesn’t speak to me but PD make a fine watch imo. I used to have one and my only issue with it was the case/strap integration. This might have a similar problem on smaller wrists as well I think which is a pity. I wish manufacturers think of universal wearability first over design aesthetic or cost

  • Independent_George

    I like this. I agree with the Strapper, the brown is striking. And with the leather strap, it looks much warmer than the blue. I don’t dislike like the case, maybe I could learn to love it.

    Five hands might be one hand too many. But a date window would ruin a dial that’s balanced and clean, even with the unfortunate AM/PM punch out. And you kinda need a date to have a GMT watch. (Sorry Germany, Great Britain beat you to it. And won two wars. So GMT it is. Even after Brexit. Deal with it.) So five hands it is, I guess.

    The base movement is what, a 2894 or an SW200? With a 38 PR, that’s what I am guessing.

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