Panerai and IWC are two of the oldest watchmakers still relevant in today’s market. Since their establishment in the 1860s, they’ve been developing state-of-the-art accessories with prices not entirely divergent from each other. This makes it more difficult to compare which of the two brands is better.
To shed clarity on the differences and similarities between the two brands, we’ve decided to compare two of the most prominent models from the brands: the IWC Portuguese and the Panerai Luminor.
The IWC Portuguese
The IWC Portuguese was first introduced in the ‘90s and its design hardly changed up until this day. Still, it remains to be one of the bestselling timepieces IWC has ever produced. The simple and straightforward design of this model has become an icon for the brand that it won’t be mistaken for anything else other than an IWC original.
Sophie Marceau, Taylor Lautner, Tony Parker, and Zac Efron are the popular celebrities seen wearing an IWC Portuguese.
- Chronograph function
- Wide range of different styles
- Automatic movement
- Looks elegant as a dress watch
- Prestigious brand name
- More precise timekeeping mechanism
- Power reserve of up to 44 hours
- Low water resistance rating
- Less versatile compared to the Luminor
- No lume on hands
The Panerai Luminor
Panerai used to be a watch manufacturer for the army before they moved into creating high-quality timepieces for public consumption. Despite several developments in the horological technology, the brand didn’t change the design of their watches which has been known for since the company’s early days. The Panerai Luminor sports the same vintage look that all watches from the brand exhibit.
- More affordable compared to the Portuguese
- Highly legible watch face
- Unparalleled lume brightness
- Power reserve of up to 192 hours
- Water-resistant up to 300 meters
- No date window
- Large and bulky
- Limited design variety
- Manual movement
Head-to-Head: Panerai Luminor vs IWC Portuguese
We’ll be comparing the Panerai Luminor 8 Days PAM00510 and the IWC Portuguese 3714-47.
The Panerai Luminor has a squarish stainless steel case and a transparent case back. It measures 44mm wide and 13mm thick.
On the other hand, the IWC Portuguese has the standard circular stainless steel case and a solid case back. It measures barely 41mm and 12.3mm thick.
The bezel of the Luminor and the Portuguese are both made of fixed stainless steel.
The Luminor features Panerai’s iconic crown guard. The Portuguese, on the other hand, has the typical pull/push crown for adjusting the watch’s hands.
The Luminor sticks to the usual design of Panerai’s watch face. The plain black dial features large, luminescent index and Arabic numeral hour markers. At the 9 o’clock position, you’ll spot a small seconds subdial that also has luminescent hands and markers.
The Portuguese’s black dial has minute markers on the outer dial and large Arabic numeral hour markers. It features two chronograph subdials situated at the 12 and 6 o’clock positions, with 30-minute and 60-seconds scales, respectively.
The Panerai Luminor Marina features a 21-jewel, in-house Calibre P.5000 manual-winding movement with an astounding 192-hour power reserve (thus the name 8 Days).
On the other hand, the IWC Portuguese features a 31-jewel IWC Calibre 79350 automatic movement with a power reserve of 44 hours.
The Luminor comes with a black, calfskin leather strap with beige stitching and a tang clasp. The package also has an additional rubber strap which you can attach to the watch with the help of the included tools.
The Portuguese comes with a black, crocodile leather strap with a deployment clasp.
The Panerai Luminor completely beats the Portuguese in terms of water resistance rating. The former has a rating of 300 meters while the latter can last up to a depth of 30 meters only.
The prices of the two watches don’t differ that much. The Portuguese is priced at $6,000 to $7,500, while the Luminor is valued at $5,500 to $6,500.
The Luminor and the Portuguese are two different watches designed for dissimilar purposes. The Luminor is more of a sports/casual/dress watch, while the Portuguese is specially designed as a high-end dress watch.
If you want a high-end, versatile watch you can take on any activity or occasion, the Panerai Luminor is the best option. But if you prefer a specialty timepiece that subtly exudes elegance and sophistication, the IWC Portuguese is your best bet.