If you’ve been following along for the past few months, you have probably heard about IWC re-inventing the IWC Da Vinci Replica collection as its big release at SIHH. Based on the original Da Vinci, first produced in 1986, this new series reflects the old case design but with a heavy focus on ladies’ pieces like the new Automatic Moon Phase 36 that you see here. It’s a new direction for the collection (and the brands) and one that is very much worth paying attention to.
Before I go into my thoughts on this replica watch, I want to preface this story with a pretty important caveat. I do not like the old Da Vinci replica watches. I never have. Sorry. BUT, I am always open to new things and am sometimes pleasantly surprised when I don’t let my preconceptions get the better of me. This is one of those instances.
Early IWC Da Vinci Perpetual Calendar Chronograph Replica, circa 1990. (Photo: Courtesy Sotheby’s)
There are six new Da Vinci models for this year: the Automatic 36, the Automatic 40, the Perpetual Calendar Chronograph, Tourbillon Rétrograde Chronograph, a special Chronograph Edition “Laureus Sport for Good Foundation,” and the replica watch we have here, the Automatic Moon Phase 36. They all incorporate a new and improved Da Vinci case shape with a similar aesthetic to the 1980s originals. The lugs are short and have an angled tear-drop shape, and are articulated, with the spring bars attached in between as usual. The replica watches come in red gold or steel, with or without diamonds (on the ladies’ models), and with silvered, blue, or dark gray dials.
For my look at the Automatic Moon Phase 36, I went for the model in steel with a silvered dial. I found it to be the most attractive out of the bunch, and while it is marketed as a ladies’ replica watch I don’t think it is overtly feminine at all (do what you will with that information).