The Hottest IWC

1695218570 The Hottest IWC
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In the world of luxury timepieces where almost all the best brands in the world were founded in Europe and eventually moved to Switzerland, the International Watch Company, also known as IWC, tells a very different story. As opposed to the European roots, IWC was actually founded in the United States of America in 1868 by an American engineer and watchmaker Florentine Ariosto Jones. At the time, Jones had been a director of E. Howard & Co in Boston, Massachusetts, the leading watchmaking company in America, but he saw an opportunity in the market where he could combine Swiss craftsmanship with the modern engineering technology from the United States to manufacture watch parts and watch movements for the booming American watch market. During this time period, wages were much lower compared to those in the United States even though there was a large and ready supply of highly skilled watchmaking labor, which would give Jones a competitive advantage over his American watchmaking competitors. In addition, most of the fine Swiss watchmaking was still done in people’s homes, however, Jones wanted to change that. Jones set his sights on opening a factory for his new watch company in Switzerland, and ended up choosing a city called Schaffhausen. This was a big deal for the city because at the time, Schaffhausen was in big danger of being left behind by the Industrial Revolution. During this stage, industrialist and watch manufacturer Heinrich Moser built the first hydroelectric plant Schaffhausen in which laid the foundation for the future of industrialization of the city. Moser met with Jones and together they decided to team up and built the foundation for the only watch manufacturers in Northeast Switzerland. To this day, IWC is still located in Schaffhausen and even does business under the name IWC Schaffhausen. Fast forward to today, we will be discussing the most popular models of the IWC brand and what you should know about each model. 

IWC Pilot:

First, we will start off with the model that put IWC on the map, the IWC Pilot. Back in the early 2000’s, IWC was one of the hottest watches on the market, specifically around the Pilot. In fact, the IWC Pilot was so successful that other brands started making their own version of Pilot watches and eventually caused IWC to lose market share as other brands were able to make Pilot watches that customers loved as much or more. So while the IWC Pilot is not as popular as it once was, it’s still one of the most popular models in the IWC brand. 

IWC Big Pilot “Le Petit Prince” 

IWC Big Pilot 7-Day IW5004-01

Details:

  • Reference number: IW501002
  • Case material: Stainless Steel
  • Dial color: Blue
  • Caseback: Closed
    Movement: 521100
  • Size: 46mm
  • Used Price: ~$10,000

The Big Pilot is arguably one of IWC’s most famous timepiece models the brand ever created. The large 46mm dial combined with a large “onion” crown gives this watch a powerful wrist presence, which makes sense that celebrities such as Arnold Schwarzenegger have been seen wearing this watch. 

The Hottest IWC
IWC Pilot Mark XVIII

Details:

  • Reference number: IW327001
  • Case material: Stainless Steel
  • Dial color: Black
  • Caseback: Closed
    Movement: 30110
  • Size: 40mm
  • Used Price: ~$3,700

At a much more reasonable price tag compared to a lot of IWC’s other Pilot models, the Pilot Mark is made to resemble the heritage of the most basic pilot watch, which has made this model highly collectable among IWC collectors. 

IWC Pilot Timezoner Chronograph

IW395001
Source: IWC Website

Details:

  • Reference number: IW395001
  • Case material: Stainless Steel
  • Dial color: Black
  • Caseback: Closed
    Movement: 89760
  • Size: 46mm
  • Used Price: ~$9,000

A true watch for a pilot, this timepiece will keep track of a second time zone as well as the time in different cities around the world, very helpful for an international pilot who’s timezone is constantly changing. 

IWC Aquatimer:

While IWC did produce a timepiece called “Mark X” in 1945 for the British military in WWII that was coined “waterproof”, it really wasn’t actually waterproof, it was closer to water-resistant. The first true waterproof IWC was released in 1967, with the IWC Aquamtimer. The initial Aquatimer had a water resistance to 650 feet and used a rotating internal bezel and two crowns, one of which operated the bezel. 

IW379503
Source: IWC Website

Details:

  • Reference number: IW379503
  • Case material: Bronze
  • Dial color: Black
  • Caseback: Closed
    Movement: 89760
  • Size: 44mm
  • Used Price: ~$9,500

In 2009, the Aquatimer line was revised to have an external rotation bezel with special coated sapphire glass. Further redesigns in 2014 included a new case construction with an external/internal rotating bezel. That’s why collaboration between IWC and the Darwin Society in its research facility in the Galapagos Islands. That’s why IWC made the Aquatimer “Charles Darwin” edition to honor the work done between the two organizations. 

IWC Aquatimer 2000. Excellent condition. Watch and card only.

Details:

  • Reference number: IW356805
  • Case material: Stainless Steel
  • Dial color: Black
  • Caseback: Closed
    Movement: 30120
  • Size: 42mm
  • Used Price: ~$3,900

A very popular IWC under $4k, these models feature a rotating timing bezel with 300 meters of water resistance. Made out of stainless steel, they are far cheaper than the other models of the Aquatimer line made out of other materials such as bronze or rose gold. 

IWC Portugieser:

In the 1930’s, two watch wholesalers from Portugal named Rodrigues and Teixeira Messrs, approached IWC claiming that the demand for watches in Portugal was still very high despite the Great Depression, which led to IWC naming an entire model line after the country Portugal. While the Portugieser model did not really find success at first, around the early 2000’s it really started to take off with the release of the Portugieser Automatic. 

IWC Portuguese Chronograph 18K Rose Gold IW371480 Silver Dial 40.9mm SERVICED!

Details:

  • Reference number: IW371611
  • Case material: Gold
  • Dial color: White
  • Caseback: Open/See through
    Movement: 69355
  • Size: 41mm
  • Used Price: ~$15,000

A stunning dress watch fully equipped with solid gold casing, a gorgeous see-through caseback, with a classy 41mm size, this one is a stunner. However, with a $15k+ price tag it will be out of reach for many. 

IW371605
Source: IWC Site

Details:

  • Reference number: IW371605
  • Case material: Stainless
  • Dial color: White 
  • Caseback: Open/See through
    Movement: 69355
  • Size: 41mm
  • Used Price: ~$7,000

If the gold casing sister model is out of your budget, then look no further as here is the same exact watch in terms of style and movement for half the price, with  the only difference being that the casing is made out of stainless steel. In addition, the blue hands on white dial is universally a very popular look, so this is a great bargain all around. 

Conclusion

We now have covered the IWC brand in depth and all the popular  models. Armed with this knowledge, you can now go into the marketplace and know which watches will be the most popular as well as the story behind each one. 

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