We look at IWC as being the Audi amongst the watch brands. These two companies seem to breathe the same air: likeable, value for money, innovative and they have something appropriate for everyone. Just like Audi, IWC sometimes introduces an existing model (Portuguese) and transforms it into something new to show what they’re capable of engineering.
The IWC Portuguese Sidérale Scafusia however, is much more than that. Based on their timeless classic Portuguese line, IWC created their most complex masterpiece ever. And we mean EVER. Forget the tourbillion with seconde mortes (dead beat seconds). This ref.5041 is capable of showing Sideral (or star time) on the dial at 12 o’clock, and is used by astronomers to keep track of the direction to point their telescopes to view a given star in the night sky. The real treat in the Sidérale Scafusia however, comes to life when you turn the watch around and have a look at the back of this Portuguese masterpiece.
IWC uses the night sky that fits the location of the customer (yes, these watches are being custom made for the lucky few) in the Portuguese Sidérale Scafusia and is capable of showing between 500 and 1,000 stars. The night sky disc rotates either clock- or counter-clockwise, depending on the geographical location of the wearer (northern or southern hemisphere). Also, the night sky disc is surrounded by a few outer rings, displaying the sidereal time, solar time, time of sunset and rise, and the number of the day of the year (absolute day). Where 1 is the first of January and 365 (or 366 in case of a leap year, like 2012) is the 31st of December.
Will an astronomer make enough money to be able to afford this IWC of 750,000.- Swiss Francs (which is more or less the same in USD)?. We don’t know, but for those who can, IWC Schaffhausen will offer them the opportunity to have the Portuguese Siderale Scafusia customized in over 200 different design options. Besides five different dial colors, there are a variety of strap colors and materials available. The use of platinum, white, and red gold for the case and the watch will be personally presented to the new owner by IWC. The Portuguese Sidérale Scafusia comes in a very large presentation box that has a watch winder built into it as well, for those days you are not able to wear it.
We are pretty afraid that the IWC Portuguese Sidérale Scafusia eventually will not see day light (or night sky, for that matter) much because it is so expensive. We will probably only see them ‘in public’ at watch auctions. That’s too bad for such a brilliant piece of engineering, but understandable.
IWC Portuguese Sidérale Scafusia Specifications
• Case in platinum, 18-carat red gold or 18-carat white gold
• Mechanical movement
• 2 barrels
• Breguet spring
• 96-hour power reserve when fully wound
• Power reserve display at 4.30
• Constant-force tourbillon and small seconds at 9 o’clock
• Sidereal time at 12 o’clock
• Sapphire glass, convex, antireflective on both sides
• Perpetual calendar with leap year display and absolute day of the year
• Celestial chart showing horizon, ecliptic and celestial equator
• Indication for day, night and twilight
• Display for sunrise and sunset
• Coordinates of chosen location
• Sapphire glass
• Case height 17.5 mm
• Diameter 46 mm
IWC Portuguese Sidérale Scafusia Video
IWC Portuguese Sidérale Scafusia Gallery
Would you wear the IWC Portuguese Sidérale Scafusia or keep it in your collection? Leave a comment and let us know!