IWC Portugieser Chronograph: A Classic Dress Watch
The Portugieser Chronograph from IWC Schaffhausen has enjoyed widespread popularity since 1998. It blends the elegance of the Portugieser series with the sportiness of a stopwatch. Fine materials and in-house calibers round off these timepieces.
5 Reasons to Buy a Portugieser Chronograph
- One of the most popular Portugieser models
- Combines a classic dress watch with a sporty chronograph
- The Portugieser Chronograph Classic: an in-house caliber with a flyback function
- Portugieser Chronograph Rattrapante with a double chronograph
- Elegant cases in stainless steel or 18-karat gold
Elegant Luxury Meets Sporty Functionality
The Portugieser Chronograph is among the most popular timepieces from IWC Schaffhausen. Its success comes largely from its design, which has changed very little since its debut in 1998. It perfectly combines the elegance of a dress watch with the sportiness of a chronograph.
With subdials at 6 and 12 o'clock, the dial looks clean and balanced. Domed sapphire glass with an anti-reflective coating on both sides protects the displays. Applied Arabic numerals and the familiar delicate feuille (leaf-shaped) hands found on other Portugieser models lend this timepiece a refined touch. This is only further underscored by the narrow bezel and high-quality round case in stainless steel or gold. A black, blue, or brown alligator leather strap completes the look.
IWC equips the Portugieser Chronograph with a modified version of the proven Valjoux 7750 chronograph caliber. Their engineers have added a rattrapante (double chronograph) module to some timepieces. This function allows you to time intervals. There are also models with in-house calibers . Examples include the Portugieser Chronograph Classic, the extra sporty Portugieser Yacht Club Chronograph, and the special edition Portugieser Chronograph released in honor of the company's 150th anniversary.
How much does a Portugieser Chronograph cost?
|Model/Reference number||Price (approx.)||Caliber|
|IW371447||6,300 USD||79350 (base caliber 7750)|
|IW371201||7,500 USD||76240 (base caliber 7750 with a rattrapante module)|
|IW390406||9,000 USD||89360 (in-house with a flyback function)|
|IW390302||9,900 USD||89361 (in-house with a flyback function)|
|IW371473||14,000 USD||79350 (base caliber 7750)|
Models with the Valjoux 7750: Prices and Details
The Portugieser Chronograph with reference number IW3714 has maintained a consistent design since its 1998 debut. Its round 40.9-mm case is incredibly comfortable to wear thanks to its downward curving lugs. Early models were powered by caliber 79240. This was replaced by caliber 79350 in 2007. Both movements are nearly identical and based on the Valjoux 7750. Unlike many other manufacturers, IWC has decided to do without the day-date display and has replaced the 12-hour counter at 6 o'clock with a small seconds dial. The result is a much cleaner and harmonious design.
The classic Portugieser Chronograph has a white silver-plated dial with your choice of gold-plated or tempered blue hands and numerals. Be sure to set aside around 6,300 USD for a new stainless steel timepiece and about 5,200 USD for a pre-owned one. Prices for models with a rose or white gold case sit between 10,500 and 13,500 USD. There are also models with a blue or black sunburst dial available. Most cost a few hundred dollars more than their classic counterparts.
Special Models with Diamonds or a Double Chronograph
The IW3714 with diamonds feels especially refined. There are versions with diamonds exclusively on the dial and others with diamonds extending onto the case. Mint-condition watches sell for anywhere between 13,000 and 21,000 USD, while pre-owned pieces demand between 8,800 and 14,500 USD.
IWC also offered the Portugieser Chronograph with a split-seconds function until 2006. Richard Habring, a master watchmaker, developed the rattrapante (double chronograph) module specifically for IWC. The base caliber was the Valjoux 7750, however, Habring removed its automatic rotor to make room for the rattrapante function. These timepieces bear the reference number IW3712 and are easy to recognize thanks to the additional push-piece at 10 o'clock. You can purchase the stainless steel version for about 7,500 USD. The gold version changes hands for around 11,500 USD.
The Classic: An In-House Caliber and Flyback Function
The in-house caliber 89361 is the beating heart of the 42-mm Portugieser Chronograph Classic, which first appeared in 2013. It boasts a flyback function, a date display at 3 o'clock, and a 68-hour power reserve. There's also a combined hour and minute counter at 12 o'clock and a small seconds dial at 6. A sapphire glass case back offers a view of the movement at work.
In terms of appearance, there's very little difference between the Classic and standard-edition Portugieser Chronograph. For example, the Classic's lugs transition slightly more seamlessly into the case. What's more, watches with the ref. 3903 feature a railroad minute scale instead of a delicate seconds scale, lending these timepieces their classic looks.
You can choose between a stainless steel or rose gold case and from a white silver-plated, black, blue, or slate-gray (Ardoise) dial. Prices for stainless steel models begin around 7,500 USD for a pre-owned timepiece and reach up to 9,900 USD for a mint-condition watch. If you prefer the model in 18-karat gold, be prepared to spend between 15,000 and 18,000 USD, depending on its condition.
Particularly Sporty: The Portugieser Yacht Club Chronograph
The Portugieser Yacht Club Chronograph is the sportiest Portugieser model. It shares its technology and much of its dial design with the Portugieser Chronograph Classic. However, unlike its sister model, its dial features an outer ring with a seconds scale. At 43.5 mm, its case is also slightly larger. Other differences include a crown protector and a rubber strap. The Yacht Club is the only watch in the collection that comes with this kind of strap.
Plan to spend anywhere from 9,300 to 10,500 USD on a mint-condition stainless steel Portugieser Yacht Club Chronograph with a white, black, or blue dial. Well-maintained pre-owned pieces often sell for around 8,200 USD. Unsurprisingly, the gold models are more expensive: These watches cost between 13,000 and 22,000 USD.