Panerai Reveals Four Stunning Luna Rossa Variants At Watches and Wonders 2024
Panerai Reveals Four Stunning Luna Rossa Variants At Watches and Wonders 2024

Panerai's iconic sailing watches offer an elegant comeback this year, with one of the most impressive limited-editions we've seen from the Maison in ages

Across horology's 400-odd years of existence, sailing and yachting have co-evolved as watches became more than just timekeepers and tools; status symbols that conveyed lifestyles, access, taste and more. And as far as the storied tale of sailing watches go — from casual to regatta settings — I don't think I'd be alone in noting how despite the Yacht-Masters and Seamasters of the world, nobody does sailing watches quite so stylishly as Panerai does. 

 

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Team Director and Skipper, Massimiliano 'Max' Sirena with a Panerai Submersible QuarantaQuattro Luna Rossa Ti-Ceramitech

 

Panerai's collaboration with the America’s Cup, starting in 2017, positioned the brand within the elite sailing sport sphere. It not only sponsored the event but also backed teams like Oracle Team USA and Softbank Team Japan. By 2019, Panerai took a step further by becoming the official sponsor of Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli. Their most notable moment came with the 36th America’s Cup in Auckland, 2021, marking a peak in their nautical partnership. This relationship was more than just a sponsorship; it aligned with Panerai’s push for performance and innovation. Throughout this six-year partnership, Panerai committed to creating a series of technical watches annually. These pieces were inspired by the America’s Cup's cutting-edge technology and the Luna Rossa team's needs; and for 2024, Watches and Wonders, Geneva has served yet again as the stage to unveil Panerai's latest additions to the project; a stunning set of all-new Luna Rossas, developed at the Maison's Laboratoria di Idee in Neuchâtel with a particular focus on exotic materials, diving capabilities, and sailing heritage. Let's take a closer look.

 

Submersible Tourbillon GMT Luna Rossa Experience Edition (PAM01405)

 

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Limited to just twenty examples, this watch will debut later this July as a cornerstone for Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli, leading up to this year's America's Cup finals. As the name suggests, a special owners' experiential is planned for the event, where Panerai will take their clients through an exclusive insider's tour of the competition, a close-up interactive experience with one of sailing's most competitive and celebrated teams — a fantastic experience for fans of the sport who'd like to see a competitive sailing team strategise, plot, and compete on the fly.

 

Indicative of recent watchmaking trends that prioritise wearability over wrist presence, the case has been significantly scaled down from the mammoth 50mm tourbillon submersibles we've seen in earlier years. The Experience Edition is the first Submersible in 45mm to feature a tourbillon complication, and also the first of its kind to fuse a high-complexity movement with Carbotech — the carbon-fibre composite used in both Luna Rossa's boat hulls and the entire watch case. Notably lighter than both titanium and ceramic, yet exhibiting an incredible strength-to-weight ratio, the Carbotech case also offers a slightly uneven, irruglar matt black surface that offers patterns and gradients unique to each of the 20 watches Panerai has on offer. In contrast, the design team has opted for a more traditional titanium on the bezel, coated with black DLC and white lacquer indices. The familiar red-white accents flank a generous application of blue and green Super-LumiNova coatings, helping enhance legibility in poor lighting conditions.

 

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Visibile through an open-worked display, the hand-wound P.2015/T calibre within is the result of three entire years worth of development at the Maison; all of which has culminated in an eight-hour long, painstaking assembly process. The tourbillon itself completes a horizontal rotation every 30 seconds; perpendicular to the balance wheel and therefore offering precision unimpaired by the effect of gravity. The result is an impressive caseback-indicated 4-day power reserve, a 24h GMT function, a night-day indicator, and perhaps greatest of all, a super-capable 300 metres of water resistance — a rather excellent feat considering the complexity of the movement within.

 

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“Our continuous collaboration with Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli team is a course that intertwines innovation with our rich legacy. This Experience edition is also our commitment to offering invaluable insights to our clientele, allowing them to not only own a timepiece of precise engineering but also the opportunity to immerse in experiences that define modern heroes,” says Jean-Marc Pontroué, CEO of Panerai.

 

Submersible Luna Rossa (PAM01565)

 

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Launching on day two of Watches and Wonders 2024, Panerai's next limited-edition (300 pieces) Submersible Luna Rossa takes an interesting exclusive e-commerce route — an increasingly common choice for haute horlogerie brands. "This watch encapsulates the essence of competitive sailing – a relentless drive toward victory and a deep respect for the marine domain. With the Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli Team at the helm, striving for triumph in the America’s Cup 2024, Panerai stands by them, not only as a sponsor but as a kindred spirit in the quest for innovation and excellence,” says Jean-Marc Pontroué, CEO Of Panerai.

 

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Encased in 42mm wrought of brushed steel, the watch offers a robust unidirectional steel bezel partially coated in matt black ceramic; a smart move to retain strength while guarding the watch's most-exposed part from scratches and knocks. The dial retains a classic Luna Rossa finish in deep, sun-brushed blue, along with the model's decal at 6 o'clock, a date window at 3 o'clock and a small seconds subdial at 9 o'clock, all framed by a combination dot-and-baton set of hour markers. Given its role as a high-end diving tool, the model allows for immersion time calculations by wearers, who will appreciate the watch's 300m metres of water resistance, making it capable of all but the deepest dives. 

 

For the movement, Panerai has chosen their iconic P.900 automatic movement; a slim, elegant calibre that has been a brand mainstay since its introduction in 2019. Unlike many other slim movements, this one is good for a solid 3 days of power reserve, an impressive feat considering its 4.2mm thickness. 

 

Submersible GMT Luna Rossa Titano (PAM01507)

 

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The most dive-capable watch on this list, the Titano takes a super-deep approach towards diving watch construction, featuring an absolutely robust build that pops out at viewers right on a first viewing. Water resistant up to 50 bar (~500 meters), this watch has been rigorously tested, subjecting it to a pressure up to 25% greater than the guaranteed water resistance value to ensure it meets Panerai’s stringent standards. The improved value is a significant milestone in a domain deeply intertwined with Panerai’s heritage that has consistently made the Maison a preferred choice.

 

Also featuring the aforementioned P.900 movement, the Titano has the distinction of pioneering the usage of the new Superluminova X2 on its indices and hour hands; offering an increased 10% luminosity over its predecessors, which will offer significant advantages to divers aiming to stretch their limits at extreme depths. The case is crafted entirely from  Grade 5 titanium; about 40% lighter and 60% harder than high grade stainless steel. The watch's GMT hand, echoing the Luna Rossa sails, pairs with a blue sun-brushed dial featuring a Luna Rossa sail decal. It has a scratch-resistant unidirectional rotating titanium bezel with a blue matt ceramic disk. Green lacquer highlights the indices and hour hand, complemented by Superluminova® X2's luminescence, with Superluminova® X1 on the minute hands and bezel dots for visibility.

 

Submersible QuarantaQuattro Luna Rossa Ti-Ceramitech (PAM01466 and PAM01543)

 

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Echoing the level of materials science required at the highest echelons of competitive sailing, this twin-watch release introduces a new watchmaking material in the form of Ti-Ceramitech — a material that Pontroué claims has been under development for around seven years.

 

Again powered by the stalwart P.900 automatic, the watch is framed by a 44m Ti-Ceramictech case, which warrants an explainer all to itself. Panerai started off by filing a patent application for a titanium ceramisation process that uses 'Electrolytic Plasma Oxidation' — a technique involves applying electrical discharges in a specific electrolytic solution to create a plasma around various metals; in this case, titanium.

 

The process transforms the watch's titanium alloy surface into a dense ceramic layer, which when combined with various elements used during the process, results in a deep, striking shade of blue that represents harsher sailing conditions — a thematic reflection of Ti-Ceramictech's ability to produce a case that's 44% lighter than steel, yet ten times more fracture-resilient than ceramic. The bezel and case showcase Panerai's advanced manufacturing, with ceramised titanium finely detailed to highlight the metal underneath at key points, offering a striking material contrast. This includes details on the crown, lever, bezel, back-case, and buckle.

 

PAM01466’s aesthetic evokes the spirit of the sea with its blue sun-brushed dial, while PAM01543 is resplendent with a white-matt grained dial, both accented with a decal of Luna Rossa and small red second hands, a subtle nod to the sailing team’s vivid identity; the former will be available across all sale points for Panerai, while the latter white-dial model will be available only at Panerai boutiques.

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