The Da Vinci Perpetual is unlike the rest of the IWC watches from design to complexity. Let’s talk about it.
Model: IWC Da Vinci Perpetual Calendar Chronograph
Calibre: IWC in-house calibre 89630
Power reserve: 68 hours
Price: ~$30000 USD
The Da Vinci is unlike what you usually see from IWC. Unlike the brand’s usual aviation-themed watches, Da Vinci has always been a medium for IWC to exhibit their immaculate craftsmanship and showing off as a complications specialist. The stylistic approach was able to grab the audiences’ attention and became a hot topic after WWII.
Taking such a sharp turn from the usual pilot watch image to producing something that looks like it should be curated in the museum is truly breathtaking. In fact, I think the Da Vinci family brought more value to the company more than anyone can imagine. This watch is the embodiment of the best artisanship of IWC, pursuing the yearlong IWC dream, to make “a pocket watch for the wrist.”
A Gentleman’s Take
The watch has a red gold model and a steel model, both are equally delicate. The Da Vinci watch family has come a long way in terms of design. The first Da Vinci watch from IWC was a quartz watch. The Da Vinci SL has a hexagonal case with a black dial, simplicity is the keyword here, an hour hand and a minute hand, that’s it.
Skip ahead to 1985 where IWC decided to reboot the series, thus redesigning and creating the Da Vinci Perpetual Chronograph we see today.
The rather mod, very 1970s lozenge shaped case is gone and instead we have something that stylistically could easily have been made in the period, say, 1925-1935 and which, in terms of mechanics and complexity, is connected to not just the tradition of high complication wristwatches, but complicated pocket watches as well.Hodinkee
The steel version rocks a slate grey colored dial, giving it a more subtle look to an eye-catching watch.
It’s a rather big wristwatch, however, the metal lugs compensated for it and making it a snug fit on the wrist. Dial furniture and hands are executed very precisely. The numerals rise elegantly from the dial and the leaf-shaped hands give a really clean look to it. The sub-dials contributed to the overall aesthetics, the even sized circles provided a much-sophisticated look on the dial, not overdone with it, just enough to make you notice the complexity without being overwhelmed.
The movement is the self-winding in house caliber 89630, with a 68-hour power reserve, the moon phase accuracy is jaw-dropping, it is accurate to one day’s error for every 577.5 years.
Kurt Klaus had created something more than a mere timekeeping device, he fused talent and character into one, assembling the spiritless cogs and wheels into a lively, heirloom-quality timepiece.
The same reason as what made the Da Vinci Chronograph so interesting back then is that the watch is technically distinctive. The design made the watch seems like it’s a royal possession. The aristocratic look and the overall aesthetics, combining with the weight and sturdiness of the case, giving the wearer a proud sense of nobility.
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