Date — 18 January, 2010
IWC Schaffhausen brings a series of sporting companions on board with the new Portuguese Yacht Club Chronograph
Times change. And so do boats, to invoke a maritime image: if the model under the Yacht Club name – the most successful IWC of the 1960s and 70s – was a sturdy craft on the river of time, then the new Portuguese Yacht Club Chronograph has rather more of an elegant racing yacht about it. And, as we know, the demands placed on the equipment are nowhere so high as when navigating on the high seas.
The legendary name of this unpretentious watch with its automatic winding system and its movement spring-mounted in the case is back. And yet the Yacht Club for the third millennium does not mimic the past in any way. This is clear from a first glimpse of the new Portuguese Yacht Club Chronograph. This new creation – a chronograph with the well-established IWC-manufactured 89360-calibre movement – is an elegant sports watch and embodies the best technical ingredients. This makes it a reliable timepiece whose functionality is beyond reproach and in which every detail, however minor, has been optimized. Not least, it is also a nautical precision instrument, because it will not let its owner down, even when sailing in rough seas.
The Portuguese Yacht Club Chronograph is the most sporting watch in the rich tradition of its family history that goes back more than seventy years, and as such it is water-resistant to 6 bar and is equipped with a screw-in crown and a crown protection. Its chronograph permits the recording of aggregate times of up to twelve hours on the common counter for the minutes and hours and can be reset to zero via the fly-back function at any time while running, so that it is instantly ready to start measuring a new time. There are many ways of measuring long stop times. Yet none are as convenient and unambiguous as those provided by the analogue display of the 89360 calibre: these can be read like a normal time display. In addition, the movement with its integral chronograph is designed in such a way that the measurement of even long stop times does not lead to fluctuations in amplitude and associated inaccuracy. The signal red centre stopwatch hand in effect also plays a central role. Together with the supplementary flange for seconds and fractions of a second, it allows extremely accurate short-interval timing.
In terms of functionality, the dial appeals with its clear railway track-style chapter ring and – for the first time in the Portuguese family – with luminescent indices and hands. It also incorporates date and small seconds displays. In spite of its sporting characteristics, the new Portuguese Yacht Club Chronograph represents a Portuguese that is true to type with its consummately neat dial and Arabic numerals.
The Yacht Club is reporting back for duty in a remarkable way after an absence of around a quarter of a century. It is available as the Portuguese Yacht Club Chronograph in three variants: in steel with a silver-plated dial, rhodium-plated luminescent hands and appliqués. Again in steel with a black dial, silver-plated flange and rhodium-plated hands and appliqués, also luminescent.
The most refined model in 18 carat red gold has an slate-coloured dial with a sun pattern ground finish, subtly contrasted by the black small seconds display circle and the black ring for the aggregate minutes of the chronograph. This model is distinguished additionally by gold-plated hands and solid red gold appliqués.
All three variants are worn on a black rubber strap with a folding clasp. And during those hours of total calm on board, far out to sea, a glance through the sapphire-glass back at the IWC-manufactured movement with IWC’s double-pawl winding even brings the yachtsman a little distraction.
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