Despite the fact that it represents the first use of the annual calendar complication in an IWC watch, the new timepiece very closely resembles the original Portugieser model from 1939. Its case is 44.2 mm in diameter, with a grooved bezel. The dial is surrounded by a railroad-track chapter ring, and has the same thin feuille hands and Arabic numerals as did its historical predecessor. It is only the placement of the small seconds subdial (at 9 o’clock rather than 6 o’clock) that significantly varies from the 1939 design — along with, of course, the three calendar windows replacing the 11 o’clock, 12 o’clock and 1 o’clock numerals.
The IWC Portugieser Annual Calendar is available in an 18k rose-gold case with silver-plated dial (Ref. IW503504, $35,700); stainless steel case with a silver-plated dial (Ref. IW503501) and stainless steel case with sun-pattern-finished midnight blue dial (Ref. IW503502, pictured; both steel versions are $24,100). The watch comes on a Santoni alligator leather strap with a folding clasp.
I had a chance to try on the blue-dial version of the IWC Portugieser Annual Calendar on the first day at SIHH in Geneva. Below is a shot of what it looks like on the wrist, as well as an image of the new IWC Caliber 52850 through the watch’s clear caseback.