Presented during the SIHH 2010 international trade show, this 2010 Panerai Luminor 1950 Marina (PAM 359) is (at least from the point of view of the hardware that powers the watch) identical to the more lightweight 2010 ref. PAM 351 in titanium. Also coming in a body of the same dimensions, this one, however, has a different dial layout and is crafted from polished stainless steel.
As you may have already noted looking at the flow of recent news regarding the Italian brand, Panerai currently undergoes a painful process of transformation from an over-advertised brand into a full-fledged Manufacture that makes its own mechanisms.
Sticking to the plan, Panerai keeps replacing standard ETA-outsourced movements with its home-made calibers that, at least partly, finally justify the sky-high price of their rugged, military-inspired models.
This Luminor 1950 Marina 3 Days PAM359 is powered by the same self-winding Caliber P.9000 that, sporting two mainspring barrels, offers a nice power reserve of at least 72 hours and is enclosed in the same 44 mm cushion-shaped case made of stainless steel.
However, besides the usual oversized “6”, “9” and “12” numerals, its black dial features an additional set of eight smaller Arabic numerals. Making the black dial look busier, the smaller numerals do not add too much to the overall legibility. However, if you happen to own a more standard version of the Luminor Marina with a more common combination of three numerals and eight stick-shaped hour makers (or even no indices at all,) this new version may become a nice addition to your (hopefully growing) collection.
The timekeeper’s automatic caliber is protected from the elements with a thick 2.6 mm sapphire glass, which is treated with an anti-reflective coating and also partly provides for an impressive water resistance rating of 300 meters making the watch (at least, theoretically) suitable even for professional diving. Of course, if you don’t miss the usual diving bezel and don’t mind destroying the expensive Panerai-branded leather strap with an oversized buckle that secures the timepiece to your wrist.
Knowing the Italian brand’s tendency to overprice their timekeepers, I would say that the list price of $7400 doesn’t look especially high for this model. After all, a watch that is animated by a manufacture-made movement should be more expensive than a similarly styled (and something tells me that you have a hard time finding a similarly styled timekeeper made by a brand of similar caliber) watch that has a more mundane ETA-sourced ebauche.
Photos: Officine Panerai
Panerai Luminor 1950 Marina 3 Days PAM 359 specification
Price range: $7,400 (MSRP)
Movement: Panerai P.9000 Calibre, automatic, 197 parts, 31 mm in diameter, 7.9 mm thick, two mainspring barrels, in-house, Swiss Made
Movement frequency: 28,800 vph
Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds, date
Power reserve: 72 hours (3 days)
Case: Polished stainless steel
Transparent back: Yes, sapphire crystal
Size: 44.00 mm
Hands: Steel, luminous
Strap: Leather strap
Crystal: Sapphire, corundum, 2.6 mm thick, anti-reflective coating
Water resistance: 300 meters