In 2013, Swiss luxury watch brand is enhancing its legendary Ingenieur watch collection with some excellent timekeepers. The completely remodelled 2013 Ingenieur watch collection from IWC Schaffhausen focuses entirely on its new partnership with the MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One
IWC’s cooperation with Mercedes-Benz dates all the way back to October 2004, when the Schaffhausen-based watch manufacturer announced a partnership with AMG, the car producer’s high-performance brand. The following year, IWC unveiled its first two Ingenieur models named exclusively after AMG. This successful and long-lasting partnership is now to be extended to Formula One
IWC Schaffhausen’s new watch models have been inspired not only by high-tech, state-of-the-art motor racing, but also by the sport’s historic roots. In the 1930s and in 1954/55, the Mercedes-Benz Silver Arrow dominated the international motor-racing scene. This is the reason why IWC has dedicated the Ingenieur Chronograph Silberpfeil to the legendary Mercedes racing car.
The 1950s was also the decade that saw the advent of the tradition-steeped Ingenieur watch family. By pursuing th motto “Progress results from continuous change”, the Ingenieur fully embodied the philosophy of the Schaffhausen based watch manufacturer. The cool, functional exterior housed a movement with a wealth of sophisticated technology.
The more outstanding features included the first bidirectional automatic winding system and protection against magnetic fields. The timepieces very soon came to stand for precision and reliability. Thanks to their rugged qualities, the Ingenieur models not only appealed to technicians but also gradually found favour with sportsmen and globetrotters. In 2013, to coincide with the relaunch of the Ingenieur line, this trend has logically taken IWC to a sporting discipline that brings together all three attributes: Formula One
The 2013 Ingenieur watch collection has been completely overhauled and comes to the grid with a host of new features. Pole position has to go to the spectacular Ingenieur Constant-Force Tourbillon (Ref. 5900) in its platinum and ceramic case. Its patented constant-force mechanism is integrated in the tourbillon and guarantees an extremely precise rate. Two barrels supply the higher torque required to drive the constant-force tourbillon and also supply the energy needed for the moon phase module: pure performance, from start to finish.
Another model guaranteed a place at the front of the grid is the Ingenieur Perpetual Calendar Digital Date-Month (Ref. 3792) with its case made of titanium aluminide, perpetual calendar and digital date display. In order to maximize efficiency, it emulates the hybrid boost button used in Formula One
With these two high-tech time machines fronting the grid, the 2013 Ingenieur watch collection is divided into two distinct lines: first, the purist-inspired timepieces in stainless-steel cases; second, sports models whose cases were inspired by the innovative range of materials used in Formula One
An outstanding example of the new sports-inspired ethos is the limited Ingenieur Automatic Carbon Performance (Ref. 3224). Like the safety cell (monocoque) and bodywork of a Formula One
The classic Ingenieur line can still be recognized by the robust stainless-steel cases and the five bores in the bezel. Purist, functional and technically mature, it distils all that is best from six decades of Ingenieur history. The Ingenieur Chronograph Racer and the Ingenieur Chronograph Silberpfeil (Ref. 3785) are perfect for recording periods of time, pit-stop times and, with the help of the tachymeter scale, the speed achieved over a measured distance. The Racer features the engraving of a modern Formula One
The quest for ever-superior materials extends not only to the watch itself but also to IWC’s straps. There is a surprise this year in the form of a new rubber strap with a textile or leather inlay. This solution cleverly combines the elegant look of the outer material with the comfort and durability of rubber on the inner side. In order to ensure that the watch is comfortable to wear despite the dimensions of the case, the lugs have been ergonomically improved and point more noticeably downwards. This ensures that the surface in contact with the wrist is concave. The metal bracelet of the Ingenieur Chronograph Racer is equipped with a special fine-adjustment clasp that enables the wearer to make minor modifications to the length of the strap whenever he wishes. All he needs to do is press gently on the button with the IWC logo at the centre of the clasp cover and pull or push the bracelet slightly.
The new Ingenieur collection boasts three distinct quality features: first-class IWC-manufactured movements, sophisticated functions and typical Formula One
The history of the Ingenieur watch family has been defined by models that reflected the prevailing zeitgeist but at the same time incorporated the forward-looking technology and progressive design that have opened up new avenues in the watchmaking industry. The launch of the first Ingenieur in 1955 (Ref. 666) took place at a time of growing enthusiasm for technology and economic boom. Its automatic movement with bidirectional winding had been developed by the then Technical Director Albert Pellaton. The Pellaton winding system was particularly efficient and gave IWC a decisive competitive edge. This was also true of the watch’s protection against magnetic fields. It was aimed specifically at a professional group that came into regular contact with magnetic fields and gave the watch its name: engineers – or, in German, Ingenieure.
In the mid-1970s, freelance designer Gérald Genta revolutionized the appearance of modern timepieces with an uncomplicated, technology-inspired design language. For IWC Schaffhausen, he designed the legendary Ingenieur SL (Ref. 1832). Instead of concealing the bores for the screws that held the bezel in position, he made them a design feature and the hallmark of the watch family.
In the 1980s, IWC fitted its Ingenieur models with thin automatic movements. One of these was the new Ingenieur SL (Ref. 3505), unveiled in 1983, which was just 10 millimetres in height. In 1985, with the Ingenieur in titanium (Ref. 3350), the Schaffhausen-based manufacturer used titanium for the first time in the Ingenieur watch family. In 1989, IWC presented the Ingenieur Automatic “500,000 A/m” (Ref. 3508), whose impressive protection against magnetic fields withstood even the 3.7 million A/m generated by a magnetic resonance tomograph. In 2005 the watch family celebrated a comeback with three new models. Equipped with the large 51113 calibre featuring Pellaton winding and a 7-day power reserve, the Big Ingenieur( Ref. 5005) made an impression in 2007. In the following years, the ruggedness and reliability f the Ingenieur Automatic (Ref. 3236) helped it to become the timekeeper of choice in extreme situations.