Five pre-SIHH Jubilee pieces that will whet your appetite for haute horlogerie

IWC Tribute to Pallweber Edition ‘150 Years’ (Ref IW505002)
If ever there was a timepiece that caused quite a stir in the social media universe, it has to be this one. The inspiration for this piece goes back to 1884 when IWC launched its very first pocket watch. Even CEO Christoph J Grainger-Herr has highlighted that this new interpretation is his favourite. He says, “I think it is so classic, so simple, so understated, and having as complex a mechanism as that in such a simple presentation is quite IWC.”

This timepiece is the first for IWC to feature jumping numerals in a digital display, as it shows the hours and minutes in large numerals on rotating discs — a throwback to the 1884 version. The timepiece has an 18-carat red-gold case, a white dial with a lacquered finish, white display discs and a blue seconds hand. The watch is available in a limited edition of 250 pieces. As a reference to the design of the historic Pallweber watches and a tribute to Florentine Ariosto Jones — the American watch­maker who founded IWC — the windows of the digital display are labelled as “Hours” and “Minutes”.

The Portugieser Constant-Force Tourbillon Edition ‘150 Years’ (Ref IW590202)
IWC has done a remarkable job with the design of this watch, considered one of the most complicated watches to make. The alchemy between two complications serves to track time more accurately. One of the many firsts for IWC is that the new IWC-manufactured hand-wound 94805 calibre with a power reserve of 96 hours combines a constant-force tourbillon with a single moon phase display that only needs to be adjusted by one day after 577.5 years. The patented constant-force mechanism transmits completely even impulses to the escape wheel. In conjunction with the tourbillon, which compensates for the negative influ­ences of gravity on the watch’s oscillating system, this achieves an excep­tionally high level of precision.

Portugieser Perpetual Calendar Tourbillon Edition ‘150 Years’ (Ref IW504501)
In an online report, David Seyffer and Michael Friedberg gave a retrospective look into how the Portugieser was created. Here’s the story in brief: It was the 1930s and two wholesalers from Lisbon, Portugal — Rodrigues and Antonio Teixera — approached IWC to create timepieces for the Portugese market; hence the name. The full and fascinating story can be found at www.iwc.com/en/forum/history-of-iwcs-portugieser-watches-reference-325.html.

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With this watch, IWC combines a perpetual calendar with a tourbillon on the dial for the first time. This watch has an 18-carat gold case, a white dial with a lacquered finish and blue hands. It is available in a limited edition of 50 watches. The watch is driven by the newly developed IWC-manufactured 51950 calibre. This is an extension of the basic 51900 calibre, with the addition of a perpetual calendar. Made of 82 individual components and weighing just 0.635g, the tourbillon is visible at 12 o’clock.  With its solid gold rotor, the automatic winding system has a power reserve of seven days.

Da Vinci Automatic Edition ‘150 Years’ (Ref IW358102)
We are predicting that 2018 will be a big year for the Da Vinci collection. A case in point is this watch that is the first to feature the new IWC-manufac­tured 82200 calibre. The watch has a stainless-steel case, a blue dial with a lacquered finish and rhodium-plated hands. It is available in a limited edition of 500 watches. The newly developed IWC-manufactured 82200 calibre is an automatic movement with Pellaton winding and boasts a power reserve of 60 hours. Components in the system subject to pronounced stress, such as the pawls or the cam, are made of virtually wear-free ceramic. The rotor is skeletonised and offers a view of the movement decorated with circular graining and Geneva stripes.

Da Vinci Automatic Moon Phase 36 Edition ‘150 Years’ (Ref IW459304)
This is one of the most evolved watches in the IWC family. It was first launched in the 1960s, but it was not until 1985 that the world took notice of the Da Vinci, which was created by a legend in the watchmaking world, Kurt Klaus, together with Günter Blümlein, the then-CEO of IWC. It is to be noted that the 1980s was the post-quartz era and a very challenging time for the watch industry, as people were slowly beginning to accept mechanical timepieces.

Fast forward 32 years later, and we have this elegant jewellery timepiece. This was a style the company cultivated towards the end of the 1980s and during the 1990s with models such as the diamond-set Lady Da Vinci in yellow gold, Reference IW8435. The Da Vinci Automatic Moon Phase 36 Edition “150 Years” (Ref IW459304) has an 18-carat red-gold case, a white dial with a lacquered finish and blue hands. It is available in a limited edition of 50 watches. The watch has a moon phase display at 12 o’clock. The case and moving lugs are completely covered by 206 pure white diamonds, amounting to 2.26 carats.