Quaranta is Italian and means the number 40. That’s how the Italian-rooted Panerai simply named its model series, which brings the manufacturer known for its masculine size policy closer to those users who are looking for a smaller-sized Panerai for their wrist.
Due to its size, Quaranta is placed in Panerai’s size hierarchy in the series of medium-sized watches, between the Submersible, Luminor and Radiomir collections, and the Luminor Due launched by Panerai as a women’s collection. Quaranta, on the other hand, is a series of watches that permeates different collections, which are specifically united by the size of 40 millimeters. A good example of this is the previously introduced Luminor Quaranta, which was a 40 millimeter version of the popular Luminor Marina model series.
A piece of history
The Luminor collection was introduced in 1993, the characteristic features of which are the cushion-style watch case, the patented crown protection mechanism, and clear hour indices. The Luminor Marina model series introduced at the same time brought a small seconds dial placed at nine o’clock. This small seconds dial remained Marina’s exclusive for a long time, but later it has appeared in other models as well. For this reason, the split second can also be found in the Submersible collection, which before its “independence” was a model series of the Luminor collection. Submersibles produced before 2019 can be identified by the LUMINOR SUBMERSIBLE text on the dial”.
The introduction of the Luminor Due collection in 2016 was the first step towards a more refined style, where a caricatured collection of watches was brought to people who stayed closely out of the water, on the deck of a yacht if possible. However, Luminor Due, presented as Panerai’s first women’s collection, was a unisex collection that for the first time offered an ever-growing selection of watches for those who appreciate good styles.
For Panerai purists, this was a tight spot, as Panerai, originally designed for the combat divers of the Italian Navy, jumped out of its established compartment – and especially from its water resistance characteristic of a diver’s watch, which was 30 meters on the Due. At this point, many people forgot the fact that the watch model designed for combat divers was the Radiomir and the Luminor only came on the market in 1993, but the leap from the deep end to the edge of the swimming pool (or the deck of a yacht) was undoubtedly a bold move.
But Pandora’s box had been opened and the market showed that there was also a demand for smaller Panerai watches. Encouraged by this, Panerai introduced the Quaranta model series in 2021, which I told you about earlier. In this series, the water resistance was sufficient even for Panerai watches to 100 meters. The now presented Radiomir Quaranta is once again testing the limits with its familiar 30-meter water resistance from Due, which has fortunately increased to 50 meters.
Panerai Radiomir Quaranta
Let’s say it right up front; Radiomir Quaranta is a lifestyle wristwatch whose user probably likes beautiful things and good styles – and Panerai. I have often compared Bulgari to represent the Italian lively lifestyle, Dolce vita, and I feel something similar in Radiomir Quaranta and also in Luminor Due.
The Radiomir Quaranta contains, apart from the water resistance required for a diver’s watch, the most important characteristics of Panerai Radiomir, i.e. a cushion-shaped watch case, wire lugs, and a sandwich dial with large indexes. The watch has a P.900 automatic movement with a power reserve of three days, a small seconds hand at nine o’clock and a date at three o’clock. The bracelet is a soft alligator strap with a steel buckle.
There are six different models of the watch, of which the gold case model with a light dial was presented in the spring in Geneva at the Watches & Wonders event. Four steel models (black, blue, light, green) were presented after the trade fair with less fanfare, of which the green-dialed model (PAM01386) is unfortunately an online store model of 500 pieces. In addition to this, there is a model with a gold case with a green dial.
My heart fell strongly for the size class that fits my wrist and for my favorite color, blue, to such an extent that after a bit of thinking, I ended up buying one for myself from Lindroos, a Panerai dealer in Finland.
As I mentioned earlier, the Quaranta models have all the hallmarks of Radiomir. In addition to their more restrained size, the Quaranta models rise above the tool-likeness of Radiomir with their golden hands and matching hour indices, which give the watches an elegant look. The hands and indices also have a fair amount of luminance, so readability, which is vital for diver’s watches, brings its own addition to the Quaranta, which is also suitable for dress wear. Your own eye is also attracted by the beautiful tonal variation brought by the sun-polished dial, depending on the angle from which you look at the watch.
What would I change?
But there are things in the watch that make you think. The first of these is the previously mentioned water resistance, which is modest for a watch with the DNA of a diver’s watch. A water resistance of 50 meters is sufficient for the majority, but a water resistance of 100 meters would be more than appropriate for a model series bearing the Radiomir name. The conditions for this should exist, especially when the watch has a screw-locking crown. Of course, Panerai’s promise is that the watch will last 50 meters with a guarantee.
Another thing to consider is the price of the watch. For 6100 euros, you can get a lot of watches from several different manufacturers, of course also from Panerai. The watch’s automatic movement is the so-called basic oats, which on the other hand is completely sufficient for the vast majority of users. The power reserve of three days (72 hours) is still better than average in the watch industry today, which in everyday life means that the watch’s power is enough to last over the weekend when it is in the watch box.
A positive experience
When I collect the good sides and shortcomings of the watch, and mirror them to my own needs and styles, as well as the attractiveness of the brand, my feeling is clearly positive in the end. Even so positive that I ended up buying the model with a blue face, because it fits my needs and styles so well that the price paid for the watch would only hurts for a while.
After buying the watch, I was even more positively surprised when I noticed that Panerai had switched to a reasonable packaging policy, i.e. the watch was delivered in a compact (read: small and light) package, inside which the watch is in its own travel case. When I quickly talked about the subject with the Lindroos salesperson who sold the watch, he said that smaller boxes are a great thing, because at the same time the need for storage space is also reduced. In other words, even the big watch brands are slowly moving towards more sensible ways of operating.
In my small watch collection, the newest Radiomir Quaranta is here to stay, as it combines Panerai’s distinctive design language with a sufficiently formal size and appearance, making it more than at home in my own styles.
In a nutshell
- Manufacturer: Panerai
- Model series: Radiomir Quaranta
- Reference: PAM01293
- Movement: P.900 automatic
- Operating frequency: 28,800 A/h
- Power reserve: 72 hours
- Watch case: stainless steel
- Diameter: 40 mm
- Thickness: 10.15 mm
- Glass: convex sapphire
- Water resistance: 50 m (5 bar)
- Lug width: 24 mm
- Strap: dark blue alligator leather
- Price: 6100 €
- Warranty: 2 years, which can be extended to 8 years by registering for the Pam.Guard service. Registration is free of charge.