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02/17/2015 | Updated on: 05/17/2024
 3 minutes

IWC Schaffhausen: Timeless Elegance and Swiss Precision

By Donato Emilio Andrioli
IWC-2-1

IWC Schaffhausen: Timeless Elegance and Swiss Precision

As one of the world’s most renowned watch brands, IWC has always placed innovation, quality, and Swiss precision at the center of its work. In this article, we’ll take a look at the traditional Swiss brand and some of its most important models, and tell you everything you need to know about IWC, from raucous ads to notorious Formula 1 drivers.

IWC: A Legend Among Watch Brands

The Swiss watch brand IWC Schaffhausen was founded in 1868 by Florentine Ariosto Jones, a watchmaker and engineer from Boston. Jones chose Switzerland as the location for his company because of the country’s abundance of skilled watchmakers and lower wages compared to the United States. IWC stands for “International Watch Company”, which positioned the brand as a global player from the very beginning. Since its founding in Schaffhausen, a town with a long watchmaking tradition, IWC has become one of the world’s most renowned luxury watch brands. It stands for craftsmanship, timeless design, and technical refinement. It’s famous for its precise mechanical movements, which combine the art of watchmaking with innovative technologies. Since 2000, the Swiss brand has been part of the luxury goods group Richemont.

The Most Important Models and Collections

IWC is home to a variety of watch collections, each with its own unique characteristics, identity, and audience. I can say with 100% certainty that there’s something here for every watch enthusiast – from classical timepieces to sports watches and beyond. Some of the best known models are without a doubt the IWC Portugieser and legendary Pilot’s Watch. The former is one of the most famous dress watches of all time and exudes a timeless elegance. The latter is the perfect example of a pilot’s watch, a true legend that’s mentioned in the same breath as the iconic Rolex Submariner and Omega Speedmaster. IWC’s most legendary model, however, is the IWC Ingenieur, which is one of the nicest Genta watches of all time and has recently enjoyed a long-overdue comeback. Its distinct look, one-of-a-kind dial, and excellent quality all make the modern reinterpretation of this classic model one of the most exciting watches of our time.

IWC Ingenieur IW328901
IWC Ingenieur: This Genta icon made a brilliant comeback in 2023.

IWC’s Contribution to Watchmaking

From the very beginning, IWC has stood for the highest quality. The brand uses the finest materials to combine durability and style, from stainless steel and gold to innovative materials such as titanium, ceramic and carbon. And IWC isn’t afraid to break new ground: The 2020 Black Carbon pilot’s watch, for example, is the first pilot’s watch with a carbon composite case. The company’s collaborations are also impressive: As part of a special partnership with the Formula 1 team Mercedes-AMG Petronas, IWC is the official timekeeper and regularly produces special editions for fans of the renowned motorsport series. With Mercedes driver and seven-time Formula 1 champion Lewis Hamilton as brand ambassador, IWC has found its way to the wrist of one of the world’s most prominent motorsport personalities.

Pilot's Watch Titanium AMG Edition
The IWC Schaffhausen Pilot’s Watch Chronograph Edition “AMG” celebrates the partnership between Mercedes-AMG and IWC.

IWC and Celebrities: A Good Team

Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg aren’t the only stars that like to wear IWC watches – Hollywood is also home to some big fans of the brand. These include:

  • Tom Cruise
  • Bradley Cooper
  • Cate Blanchett
  • Quentin Tarantino
Der legendäre Regisseur Quentin Tarantino trägt eine IWC Big Pilot´s Watch „Le Petit Prince“ . Hätten Sie das gedacht?
Legendary director Quentin Tarantino wears an IWC Big Pilot’s Watch “Le Petit Prince.” Who could have guessed?

 

Do IWC watches retain their value?

When purchasing a watch, especially a luxury watch, it’s important to think about value retention. We all work hard for our money, and it’s not every day you buy a special watch. With their high quality, timeless designs, and luxury brand image, IWC watches are highly sought-after collector’s items. The brand has built up a first-class reputation over the years, which is reflected in the stable value of well-known models like the IWC Ingenieur, Portofino, and Pilot’s watch. That’s especially true if you buy one of these pieces at current market value. The new IWC Ingenieur is one of the most sought-after watches in the IWC catalog, meaning that it won’t take long to find a buyer for it. However, if you’re still not sure, take a look at this article.

IWC Portofino Chronograph 39
Well-known models like the IWC Portofino are especially popular.

 

IWC: Summary and Outlook

All in all, IWC Schaffhausen is one of the most respected and innovative brands in the world. With their rich history, dedication to craftsmanship, drive to innovate, high quality, and continuous evolution, they’re an integral part of the watch world. The brand will surely be responsible for another sensation or two in the industry – just wait and see!


About the Author

Donato Emilio Andrioli

With the purchase of my Tudor Black Bay 41, I discovered a passion for mechanical watches. I am particularly drawn to iconic watches with long and exciting histories.

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