This post follows on from my previous post covering the most simple and the most complicated of the Ingenieurs from IWC this year. This time, it’s some of the rather more sporty models linked with the new Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 relationship, plus a rather quirky digital piece.
First is the AMG Black Series Ceramic Ref. 3225 (11,800 EUR, US$13,300), a hefty 46mm (14.5mm thick) three-hander with a 44 hour power reserve automatic movement, which you can see through a transparent caseback. The name derives from the “Black Series” Mercedes-AMG high performance concept cars.
The case is ceramic and it comes on a black rubber strap with textile inlay or brown calfskin, depending on whether you choose the black or brown models. The brown model has matching beige hands, numbers and indices. Design-wise quite simple, but because of the large ceramic case, with a definite wrist presence.
The Mercedes AMG model that was struck me as one that will probably have broad appeal was the Chronograph Silberpfeil. Named after the Mercedes ‘Silver Arrow’ W 25, which was featured in IWC’s booth, the most marked Silver Arrow link is the circular grained dial. Available either silver or brown, the graining references the car’s dashboard, which had a similar decorative element. The chronograph is a flyback and there is also a date window at 6 o’clock. An engraving of the car after which the watch is named features on the back of the 45mm case. Both colour variants will come in a limited edition of 1000 pieces each. Price is 11,600 EUR.
Another limited edition racing related model is the Ingenieur Carbon Performance. Containing the same movement as the AMG Black Series Ceramic, this watch is a hefty 46mm (height of 14.5mm) and, as the name indicates, in a carbon case.
So what are the Mercedes AMG attributes of this watch? The middle section of the case held together by five screws is manufactured using the same principle as the monocoque of a racing car – the fibre matting is soaked in epoxy resin, shaped to the desired form and then baked at a high temperature and pressure, after which the resin is cured. The dial, which comes in either yellow or red versions, is also made of carbon fibre. If you look through the transparent caseback, you will also find a rotor shaped like pistons. Both the yellow and red versions are limited to 100 pieces each, and the price is 23, 200 EUR.
My final model for this post is, for me, the most visually arresting and visually auto-oriented piece in IWC’s 2013 Ingenieur collection, the Perpetual Calendar Digital Date-Month. With added chronograph, so to speak. The 46 mm case is made of the lightweight titanium aluminide, a material that is widely used in the world of motorsports because of its extraordinary resistance to high temperatures. The black parts of the watch’s case are zirconium oxide. Through the caseback can be seen the Calibre 89802 and its rotor, which resembles a wheel’s spokes.
The perpetual calendar has a digital date and leap year display, will take the leap year into account, and will not require correction until 1 March 2100, something that we won’t have to worry too much about, unless something remarkable happens.
The way in which the calendar and leap year are displayed is what, for me, is what is visually most car-related, with its resemblance to counters on a dashboard. I quite like this watch. It is a busy dial, but everything is balanced and easy to read. The use of a digital display is probably going to be one of those divisive elements – either you like it or you don’t, with not much middle ground. It’s certainly means that the date dominates the watch, at any rate. Price is 43,800 EUR