The Portugieser Automatic is one of IWC's most successful Portugieser models. In terms of design, the Swiss watch manufacturer emphasizes simplicity and classic elegance. This watch features an in-house caliber with a power reserve of seven days.
The International Watch Company (IWC) presented the Portugieser Automatic for the first time in 2004. In terms of design, the automatic watch is reminiscent of the first Portugieser from 1939. Two Portuguese businessmen requested IWC create a wristwatch with the precision of a marine chronometer. Marine chronometers had been used by sailors for centuries and were vital for both navigating and determining the ship's position. Back then, only large pocket watch movements could guarantee such a level of precision. Therefore, IWC used caliber 74 in a wristwatch case. This caliber was used in savonnette pocket watches and had a right-side crown.
The look of the IWC Portugieser is classic and elegant yet simple. The dial on the current models has a clean, clear layout that displays the time and date and features a power reserve indicator. Since 2015, the Portugieser Automatic has been powered by an in-house caliber from the 52000 family. Once fully wound, this caliber can run for seven days. Thus, you can easily set your Portugieser Automatic aside for a few days to wear a different watch and it will still be running when you're ready to wear it again. The 42.3-mm case pays homage to earlier models in the Portugieser series.
Mechanical wristwatches with a power reserve lasting seven days are a rarity in the watch world. Usually, power reserves last around 40 hours. However, 40 hours don't allow you to take your watch off on Friday and have it running perfectly on Monday morning. This 168-hour power reserve, on the other hand, is truly impressive. The Lange 31 takes it one step further: This watch from A. Lange & Söhne has a power reserve of a record-breaking 31 days. New, the timepiece costs around 130,000 euros. The IWC Portugieser Automatic is significantly more affordable. A pre-owned stainless steel version in good condition costs about 6,000 euros. New stainless steel models cost a bit more at 8,500 euros. If you prefer a red gold case, then you should be prepared to pay about 11,000 euros. New gold watches from this collection cost around 17,000 euros.
If you want a wristwatch with a stopwatch function, then the Portugieser Chronograph is a good choice. You can time up to 30 minutes with this watch. It keeps track of the timed minutes on a subdial below 12 o'clock. The small seconds subdial is located at six o'clock. The caliber 79350, based on the ETA Valjoux 7750 movement, powers this watch. The Valjoux 7750 is one of the most successful automatic chronograph calibers in the world. Pre-owned stainless steel models are available starting around 4,000 euros. New models cost at least 5,000 euros. The Portugieser Chronograph is also available with a gold case; this version costs around 8,000 euros. You should plan to spend about 12,000 euros on a new gold watch.
The IWC Portugieser Automatic is available in several different versions. The stainless steel model comes with either a black or silver-plated dial. The silver-plated dial features blue or gold-plated hands and appliqués. The black dial has silver hands and indices. The red gold models have either a silver-plated or slate-colored dial; both have applied hour markers made of gold. The small seconds is located at nine o'clock on every version. The power reserve indicator is located directly across from it at three o'clock, while the date display is at six o'clock. IWC pairs the gold watches with a dark brown alligator leather strap. Black alligator leather straps accompany the stainless steel models.
The case diameter of these watches is 42.3 mm. Thanks to the ergonomically designed lugs, the Portugieser Automatic is also suitable for somewhat thinner wrists. Domed glass with anti-reflective coating on both sides give you a perfect view of the dial. See-through sapphire glass is also used for the case back so you can watch the automatic caliber work in real time. The movement's skeletonized winding rotor with a solid gold medallion, Geneva stripes, and ceramic winding system components are automatic eye-catchers.
Since 2015, the in-house caliber 52010 has powered the IWC Portugieser Automatic. This movement has an impressive power reserve lasting seven days and features the Pellaton winding system, an especially efficient system. It uses small movements of the oscillating mass to wind the spring in both directions. In 1950, IWC patented the winding system, which was developed by Albert Pellaton, the technical director at IWC from 1944 to 1966.