Last week, I got on a plane to Stuttgart, where Porsche Design hosted an event to mark its 50th anniversary. We were taken to the impressive Porsche museum in a fleet of black Taycans, where we were greeted by a speech from Porsche Design’s CEO Jan Becker. Afterward, Porsche Design CDO Roland Heiler brought us up the stairs into the main showroom, where we were shown a number of highlights from the history of Porsche Design. This included the famous sunglasses with interchangeable lenses, laptops, pens using the Tec Flex material, and the All-Black “Bounce Chronicles” sneakers designed in collaboration with Adidas. Finally, our attention was directed to a freshly restored 911 S 2.4 Targa from 1972. But the stunning vehicle was not the only classic piece of the brand’s history to make a comeback. After dinner, we were told that the PD Chronograph 1 would also return.

This exciting announcement wrapped up an evening of sensory overload. Surrounded by the incredible work of both Porsche and Porsche Design, the museum was truly a sight to behold. I’ve put together a small photo gallery of some highlights at the end of this article for you all to enjoy. That said, it’s time to go back to the star of the show. And no, it’s not the incredibly beautiful 1972 Targa or its modern counterpart. I’m talking, of course, about the other murdered-out masterpiece in the room — the Porsche Design Chronograph 1 All Black Numbered Edition!

A classic returns

I won’t go too far into the history of Porsche Design as a brand. Our very own Andreas Ahrens already did in an article that you can read here. Instead, I want to focus on the watch itself. The thing that makes its return so special. The differences it has from its predecessors. All of the technical details, from the case to the movement. And finally, an exciting hint of things to come later this year. But first, it’s worth recapping the two previous limited-edition watches that foreshadowed the classic chronograph’s return. Let’s start with the one you see above, the Chronograph 1 911 Edition 50 Years Porsche Design. This watch is only available to the lucky owners of the 911 Targa 4 GTS. And though it’s similar in form and design to the new numbered edition, you can spot the word “flyback” on the 6-o’clock register.

Chronograph 1 1972 Limited Edition

Another difference is the movement used inside, though one must flip the watch to spot this. A second limited edition was presented earlier this year — the Chronograph 1 1972 Limited Edition. This 500-piece limited edition is closer to the original Porsche Design Chronograph 1 and features the old-style PD brand logo. This limited release gave the watch world a taste of the brand’s iconic chronograph. And if you were left wanting one for yourself, news of this release will be music to your ears. Vintage purists will have to learn to like the new logo on the dial, the sharp-tipped minute hand, and the extra bit of text under the day and date windows, but other than it’s a faithful recreation of the original. So, let’s take a closer look at all of the features of the Porsche Design Chronograph 1 All Black Numbered Edition.

The Porsche Design Chronograph 1 All Black Numbered Edition

For €8,950, you get a 40.8mm titanium-cased chronograph with a lot of retro charm but all the modern fixings. Instead of the original PVD coating, the case and bracelet feature a glass bead-blasted titanium carbide finish. The classic broad tapering H-link bracelet is perfectly slim, matching the case’s 14.15mm height. The watch’s flat sapphire crystal is coated with seven layers of anti-reflective coating, to keep things clear and glare-free and ensure that the dial is perfectly legible. The crown and sapphire case back screw-down and provide 100m of water resistance. This is as much as you would want/expect from a modern sporty chronograph. The day wheel is available in both English and German, which is also a nice touch. The bracelet features a quick-release system, and its folding clasp has a micro-adjustment system built in.

Inside, you will find the Porsche Design caliber WERK 01.140 — a COSC-certified self-winding movement with 48 hours of power reserve. This powers the watch’s chronograph feature, which has running seconds at 9 o’clock, a 30-minute counter at 12 o’clock, and a 12-hour register at 6 o’clock. At the 3-o’clock position, you’ll find a very of-the-era day and date indicator, color-matched to the dial. A tachymeter scale decorates the rehaut and remains safe under the sapphire crystal. One other detail to note is the movement’s decoration, which includes a black chrome-plated rotor, signed with the Porsche Design logo, as well as a matching black bridge. Engraved on it, you will find the caliber’s name as well as a recurring pattern made up of the “PD” logo. As the name indicates, each watch will be numbered, with said digit engraved on the outer ring of the case back.

Final thoughts

A blacked-out watch with a dash of crimson running across it in the form of a chronograph seconds hand. This classic look is one that no other brand has pulled off as well, though some have certainly tried. And though the price tag of €8,950 certainly puts it at a price point where it will compete with other classically-styled chronographs (not least of which would be the Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch). I must admit, however, that standing in the Porsche museum looking at the previous limited editions did have me wishing that a non-limited production model was available. And little did I know that this wish would come true by the end of the evening. Something tells me that I was not alone in wishing for this return. In the meantime, enjoy some pictures of the event last week:

What do you make of the Porsche Design Chronograph 1 All Black Numbered Edition? Are you happy to see this one making a comeback? Let me know your thoughts in the comments down below. For more information on the watch, and its availability from November 2022 onwards, check out the Porsche Design website.

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