5218-202/A | Pre-V Marina Militare

  • Collection: Pre-V Marina Militare
  • Model reference: 5218-202/A
  • Case/Size: Stainless steel coated with black PVD, 44mm
  • Dial: Black
  • Movement: Manual-winding
  • Functions: Hours, minutes
  • Condition: Very good

$ 75,000

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Description

The first Luminor model was introduced in 1993, as part of the introduction of Panerai as a watch brand for civilians.
Panerai’s breakthrough consumer product, it was instantly recognisable with the 44mm case diameter, the Panerai crown protector, and the integrated lugs of the later military models.

Sylvester Stallone was one of the first clients, and played a huge part in the commercial success of Panerai, as he wore the Luminor Marina in the 90’s action flick ‘Daylight’. Sly even ordered a set of custom “Slytech” branded Luminors gifting them to his celebrity friends, who then wore them in other movies. These multiple unsponsored film appearances and sightings on the wrists of Stallone associates, including Arnold Schwarzenegger, raised the company’s public profile sufficiently to jump-start initial consumer demand.

Luminor since then found a permanent place in the Panerai catalogue with several variations and upgrades in the last 2 decades.
Some popular models include the PAM111 (base model), the 47mm beauty that is the Luminor Submersible PAM682, the 49mm giant LAB-ID Luminor 1950 Carbotech and the most desired of them all – the Luminor Bronzo PAM382.

 

The present model (Ref: 5218-202/A) is a rare example from the pre-Vendome Panerai.

Produced in 1994, this rarity features a 44mm stainless steel Luminor case in black PVD, with a black dial and tritium painted hour markers and hands.

The watch is in perfect condition running on a Unitas 6497-I hand-wound movement featuring the incabloc shock protection system, and finished off beautifully with Côtes de Genève.

These were not standard production movements, but were modified on special request by Guenat S.A. Montres Valgine for Officine Panerai.

Of only 140 pieces made, this is No. 119 and comes on its original brown calf-skin leather strap, plus two additional straps.

 

Panerai – bio

In 1860, Giovanni Panerai set-up a watch repair workshop and a sales showroom in Florence, which he later named Orologeria Svizzera. A destination for Swiss watches in Florence, the company later diversified into mechanical engineering and component fabrication, which helped them secure military contracts with the Royal Italian Navy, as an official supplier of mines and submersible navigation tools.
Panerai’s R&D lead them into the development of a self-sustaining source of illumination for the military equipment, which was trademarked as ‘Radiomir’.
Within its watch business division, Panerai had strong ties with Rolex who had developed the world’s first water resistant case – the ‘Oyster Case’. With ‘Radiomir’ and the Rolex Oyster case, Panerai made solid tool watches, further strengthening its relationship with the Italian Navy.
The result of this three-way collaboration was the legendary Ref: 3646, made between 1938 and 1956.
During the WWII, the Panerai timepieces and Italian frogmen became influential in elite tactical circles. The German navy adopted the Panerai, dubbed the “Kampfschwimmer,” as the timekeeper of choice for its own elite amphibious units.
Panerai continued to develop and experiment with enhanced designs which lead to the creation of the models such as ‘Mare Nostrum’, and the ‘Luminor’. It is important to note that until the consumer era, the names Radiomir and Luminor exclusively referred to luminescent paint compounds, and not the case designs.
Panerai supplied watches exclusively to the military until the 1970s, after which the brand practically went out of business as the wars / contracts ended.
In 1993, following Rolex’s commercial success within the diving watches, they launched three watches for the first time for civilians, based on their historical naval associations. One Mare Nostrum and two Luminor references, of which the latter became the basis for Panerai’s breakthrough consumer product. Now a specific case design rather than a luminous paint.
By the late 90s, the brand started gaining popularity within the consumer market and caught the attention of the Vendome Group – now Richemont, S.A. which acquired Panerai in 1997.
Today, Panerai is one of the most iconic and instantly recognisable brands in the world.

Additional information

Accessories:

Accompanied by a Panerai warranty certificate, product literature and a wooden presentation box