The latest remodelled 2013 Ingenieur watch collection from renowned watch brand IWC Schaffhausen focuses entirely on its their partnership with the MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One™ Team.
For the next three years, leading watch brand IWC Schaffhausen will be the Official Engineering Partner of the Mercedes-Benz works team. For their new watch collection, the company’s design engineers have taken inspirartion and design clues from Formula One™. Hi-Tech materials commonly used in motorsport, including carbon fibre, ceramic and titanium, are going to be the hallmarks of the new design line in the Ingenieur watch family. The technical workmanship confirms the reputation of IWC Schaffhausen as a company that has been manufacturing top-quality timepieces for more than 140 years.
The watches sharing the front two rows of the the Grid.
The 2013 Ingenieur watch collection has been completely overhauled and comes to the start grid with a host of new features. The leading qualifier and sitting in pole position has to be the spectacular Ingenieur Constant-Force Tourbillon (Ref. 5900) liveried in its platinum and ceramic case. The 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™ and uses the energy recovery principle. Every night, when the date display advances, the quick-action switch taps off a little energy and stores it until the end of the month or year, and makes it available precisely when it is needed. The dial has semi-transparent sapphire-glass inlays over the date, month and leap year discs, which enable the wearer to observe the complex interplay of the discs as they advance. On New Year’s Eve, the five displays begin to move simultaneously. It is a complex technological feat that will hold an irresistible appeal for lovers of sophisticated mechanical systems.
The Sports-Inspired Ingenieur Line
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™.
Christian Knoop, Creative Director at IWC: “In the new Ingenieur line, IWC interprets the racing theme by using materials typically employed in motorsport, such as carbon fibre, ceramic and titanium, and drawing on design cues taken from the modern Formula One™ cockpit. Screws attach the bezels securely to the case, which lends additional emphasis to the watches’ sporty, high-tech character.
They are thus a logical continuation of an IWC product family that has one of the richest traditions of them all. Inspired by our own history, which naturally includes the legendary design of the Ingenieur SL created by the famous watch designer Gérald Genta, we combine technical innovation with characteristic design in the new collection. The result is a set of powerful, striking Ingenieur watches in a class of their own.” 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™ racing car, the case and dial are made of epoxy resin-soaked carbon-fibre matting, which is then cured at high temperatures and overpressure.
Carbon fibre has long been one of the hallmarks of Formula One™ and, at the same time, an impressive symbol for innovative materials. By using this demanding material not only for individual components but also for the entire outer case of the Ingenieur Automatic Carbon Performance, IWC Schaffhausen underscores its reputation as a manufacturer of top-quality watches. The Ingenieur Automatic AMG Black Series Ceramic (Ref. 3225) recalls the many years of cooperation between IWC and AMG, the high-performance arm of Mercedes-Benz. The Schaffhausen-based watch manufacturer discovered the use of ceramic – or, more specifically, zirconium oxide – for the watch industry as early as 1986. Titanium, which was introduced by IWC in 1980, was used for the Ingenieur Double Chronograph Titanium (Ref. 3865). Thanks to a split-seconds function, the double chronograph is ideally equipped to keep track of lap times.
The Ingenieur Dual Time Titanium (Ref. 3264) neatly rounds off the sporty design line. It has a display that shows a second time of day, which is of enormous help to the MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One™ Team, who need to keep track of things when moving continuously from one time zone to another.
Purist, Functional and Technically Mature
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™ car while the Ingenieur Chronograph Silberpfeil revives the legend of the historic Mercedes-Benz racing car of the same name. The silver-coloured circular graining on the dial is a tribute to the legendary Silver Arrow W25, whose instruments were placed on a dashboard with a circular-grain decoration.
In addition, a historic Silver Arrow is engraved on the case back. The elegant Ingenieur Automatic (Ref. 3239) with its three hands rounds off the classic line and has a timeless,distinctively clear design together with protection against magnetic fields up to 40,000 amperes per metre.
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 an alligator leather or calfskin 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.
Georges Kern sums up the major relaunch of the Ingenieur watches as follows: “The new Ingenieur collection boasts three distinct quality features: first-class IWC-manufactured movements, sophisticated functions and typical Formula One™ materials.” IWC Schaffhausen’s CEO continues: “Some of the in-house movements bear witness to the inventive spirit of our watchmakers. These include the highly complex 94800 calibre with its constant-force mechanism and the 89802 calibre with the quick-action switch. With complications like the tourbillon, perpetual calendar, digital big date and moon phase display, the Ingenieur watch line has finally taken its place in the upper echelons of haute horlogerie.”
Forward-Looking and Inspired by the Zeitgeist
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 made use of this challenging material 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 rugged ness and reliability of the Ingenieur Automatic (Ref. 3236) helped it to become the timekeeper of choice in extreme situations.
The new IWC 2013 Ingenieur collection will doubtless appeal equally to admirers of highly sophisticated in-house watch movements and to those who love nothing more than the scream of a high-performance engine.