IWC Schaffhausen has recently launched the Ingenieur Automatic 40 at the Watches and Wonders exhibition held in Geneva. The new model reflects the bold design aesthetics of the Ingenieur SL, Reference 1832, designed by Gérald Genta in the 1970s while also adhering to modern standards of ergonomics, technology, and finishing. The collection comprises three references in stainless steel and one in titanium.
The Ingenieur Automatic 40 is equipped with the IWC-manufactured 32111 calibre, which has a power reserve of 120 hours. The watch features soft-iron inner cases, protecting the movements from magnetic fields, and is water resistant up to 10 bar, making it an ideal sports watch for the 21st century.
In the 1970s, IWC Schaffhausen commissioned Gérald Genta, a renowned Geneva-based watch designer, to redesign the Ingenieur, originally introduced in 1955. The Ingenieur was a technical milestone for IWC, as it featured the first automatic movement developed in Schaffhausen and a soft-iron inner case for magnetic field protection. The watch was named “Ingenieur,” the German and French word for “engineer,” to reflect its engineering prowess. Genta gave the Ingenieur a highly distinctive visual identity, and his Ingenieur SL, launched in 1976, was a talking piece of IWC’s SL collection of steel luxury watches. The watch’s unique design featured bold aesthetic codes, such as a screw-on bezel with five recesses, a unique patterned dial, and an integrated H-link bracelet. The Ingenieur SL was ahead of its time and is now a collector’s favourite and one of the most sought-after models from IWC’s history.
The Ingenieur Automatic 40 has carefully reworked and improved case dimensions, with a lug-to-lug distance of 45.7 millimetres, ensuring perfect ergonomics and wearability, even on a slender wrist. The new model features a newly engineered middle-link attachment, enhancing ergonomics and providing an even better fit on the wrist. The curved casing ring further improves the ergonomics of the case.
The introduction of functional, polygonal screws on the bezel is one of the most striking changes in the new model. For the Ingenieur SL, a bezel with five recesses was screwed onto the case ring, ending up in a different position on each watch. With the Ingenieur Automatic 40, five screws secure the bezel to the case, always in the same position. The dial features a distinctive “Grid” structure, consisting of small lines offset by 90 degrees to each other, stamped into the soft iron blank before being galvanised. Appliques with luminescence add additional depth and ensure easy legibility, even at night.
The Ingenieur Automatic 40 features an incredibly high level of detail and finishing, with the case, bezel, and bracelet elaborately finished using a combination of polished and satin-finished surfaces. The upper parts of the bracelet contain closed links without pins, accentuating the outstanding craftsmanship. The integration of an elaborately finished butterfly folding clasp highlights the beauty and thinness of the H-link bracelet. A newly designed crown protection further underscores the sporty character of the timepiece.
The Ingenieur Automatic 40 is available in three references in stainless steel: Ref. IW328901, featuring a black dial and rhodium-plated hands and appliques, Ref. IW328902, featuring a silver-plated dial and rhodium-plated hands and appliques, and Ref. IW328903, featuring an aqua dial and rhodium-plated hands and appliques. All three references feature an integrated stainless steel bracelet with a butterfly.
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