Sustainability is not only top of the agenda for the luxury watch industry, it’s also clearly entrenched in day-to-day practice, with an impressive list of brands already turning their businesses around to meet the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
There is a commendable commitment to ethical material-sourcing and more circular economies, with pioneers such as Chopard and IWC Schaffhausen leading by example.
Out of the Panerai Laboratorio di idee this year, emerged an industry first in the form of the Submersible eLAB-ID PAM01225 concept watch with 98.6% of its weight made from recycled base materials.
Getting most of the media attention at the recent Watches & Wonders Geneva, its case, sandwich dial, and bridges are composed of EcoTitanium — a recycled titanium alloy that is a lightweight, aerospace-grade metal made of more than 80% pure recycled content. It is also the first watch to feature 100% recycled Super-Luminova on the dial and hands, and 100% recycled silicon for the movement escapement of the automatic mechanical calibre P.900e inside.
It is presented on a recycled grigio roccia (rock grey) fabric strap and is water resistant to 300m.
This will be the blueprint for all to follow, with production planned for 2023, in a limited edition of 30 pieces.
The Panerai Ecologico initiative also drives innovation in this area, and the manufacture has decided to share its insights and supplier resources with other brands that are on the same road to creating a more sustainable future, based on a circular use of natural resources. “We will be very happy if all our peers in Switzerland and around the world get in touch with the same suppliers to use the same materials,” said CEO Jean-Marc Pontroué.
In case you thought this was all media hype and yet another concept watch, the innovations from Panerai's research and development do make it into regular production models. The latest 44mm Panerai Luminor Marina eSteel references have 58% of the total weight of each watch made from recycled base materials. Both the case and dial feature eSteel — a new, recycled steel alloy that has an identical chemical behaviour, physical structure, and resistance to corrosion as a non-recycled alloy.
The Luminor’s characteristic sandwich dial is available for this model in three polished, gradient colors: blu profondo (deep blue) (PAM01157), grigio roccia (PAM01358), and trending verde smeraldo (emerald green) (PAM01356), with colour-coordinated recycled textile straps.
Inside, the inhouse Calibre P.9010 automatic movement has a three-day power reserve. This movement features a rapid adjustment system able to move the hour hand forwards, or backwards, in increments of one hour, independent of the minute hand.
Also water-resistant to 300m, the eSteel models will retail for about R154,900.
• For more information visit the Panerai website or call RLG Africa 011-317-2600.