In collaboration with the renowned freediver Guillaume Néry, Panerai launched a number of editions inspired by his pursuits at the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie this year. We had a chance to go hands on with the Submersible Chrono Guillaume Néry Edition 47mm.
Free diving is about the feeling of freedom and, of course, the harmony between humans and water: without any help from equipment, one needs to be present and focus on the moment to ensure safety. For the general population the physical limit, without any assistance of breathing apparatus, is approximately 40-50 meters underwater, following some professional training.
This makes Néry’s ability to hold his breath for more than 7 minutes and go to depths greater than 126m all the more impressive. In February, he released a short documentary called “One Breath Around the World”, in which he swims with whales, jumps off an underwater cliff, is seen running on the seabed and dipping underneath the ice, showcasing the wonders of the underwater world.
Produced in titanium, the PAM00982 features a unidirectional bezel with blue ceramic insert and the traditional dive watch markings. The dial is attractively textured and finished in “shark grey”, with the subsidiary dial for running seconds at 9 and a 12-hours counter at 3. The blued centre hand is for chronograph seconds, and the polished hand records elapsed minutes. Applied with two coloured luminous material, the bezel’s 0 indicator is filled with blue to match the minute hand tip for divers checking crucial timing, while those for the hour indicators are in green.
To ensure water resistance, the 47mm case features the signature crown protection mechanisms, and on the opposite side are two screw down pusher for fly-back chronograph function, allowing for the equivalent of a 300 meter depth rating. The case back is engraved with Guillaume Néry’s signature and also a sketch of him diving with a line representing the depth indicator rope that is vital to free divers.
In addition to the standard production version, there is also a limited edition of 15 pieces in DLC titanium with a dial that graduates from a blue/green centre to black on the outside edge. The model, PAM00983, also features a revised case back engraving that shows the island of Moorea in French Polynesia, which Néry now calls home and will also host the 15 lucky owners to a free-diving experience. The last model to round out the Néry editions, is another non-limited reference, the Submersible 42mm PAM00959 to ensure that those with smaller wrists don’t feel left out.
Reconnecting humanity with the environment is of the utmost importance today, and the reference PAM00982, together with the other Guillaume Néry Edition, is not only a versatile watch to wear, but also carries a daily reminder of what Néry stands for and his interaction with the ocean.
PAM00982 is now available and priced at 147,000 HKD at the time of publishing.