Unveiled at the beginning of the year, this IWC Aquatimer Chronograph in Red Gold (Ref. IW376903) seems to be one of the dressiest models in IWC‘s whole range of diving watches. With its black-red-white unidirectional rotating bezel nicely accented by 18-carat rose gold and supported by black carbon-fiber, the timekeeper gives you the best of two worlds: while extremely dressy and elegant, it is also highly legible and ergonomic.
Like the rest of the family, the watch is good for depths up to 120 meters, which makes it suitable for most amateur divers. However, something tells me that about 99 percent of sold watches will never taste the salty sea water, so let us just skip this part.
Still, this dressy diver may be an excellent choice for those planning to spend a couple of weeks on board of a small yacht cruising along the Mediterranean shores.
Those familiar with IWC’s current model range may have noticed family resemblance between the model 3769 and the gorgeous IWC Big Ingenieur Chronograph. If you compare the images, both models feature the same dial layout with only minor styling differences.
Just like its slightly bigger land-bound brother –and unlike the rest of the collection–, the Aquatimer Chronograph is powered by an in-house Caliber 89360 automatic movement featuring generous 68 hours of power reserve.
The movement also allowed the Swiss watch company to get rid of the familiar-to-boring tri-compax dial layout in favor of much more engaging bi-compax design, however retaining the normal chronograph functionality and improving its usability.
The sub-dial at 12 o’clock looks like a GMT display, but is in fact a two-in-one chronograph totalizer.
The sub-dial has two time scales –minutes on the outer and hours on the inner circle– and two –hours and minutes– hands making it especially easy to tell elapsed time. The sub-dial at 6 o’clock is reserved for the small seconds counter and the date display window.
Of course, the watch sports a sapphire transparent case back providing a good look at its extremely fine decorated movement. The bad news is that the decoration is absolutely identical to that of all other IWC watches powered by the Caliber 89360 movement. Well, that’s aptly called “mass production.”
Inspired by IWC’s pre-war pocket watches, the mechanism was designed to power their oversized timekeepers. As a result, the mechanism not only looks more proportional when admired through the Aquatimer’s sapphire case back cover, but also happens to house longer mainspring that gives it a more modern power reserve of 68 hours. That’s about 50 percent better than an ETA 7750-powered watch can give you.
At a price of more than $22,000 USD the Aquatimer Chronograph looks a bit expensive, but, hey, it’s crafted from red gold and features and in-house caliber, so the price sorta comes with the territory.
See also: IWC Aquatimer Deep Two diving instrument
IWC Aquatimer Chronograph in Red Gold (Ref. IW376903) diving watch specification:
Price range: $22,100
Movement: Caliber 89360, in-house, automatic, 40 jewels, 28,800 vph, Swiss Made
Complications: Date, bi-compax fly-back chronograph
Power reserve: 68 hours
Case material: Red gold
Case size: 44.00 mm
Case height: 15.50 mm
Dial: Black carbon fiber
Water resistance: 120 m
Crystal: Sapphire, spherical, antireflective coating on outer and inner sides
Case back: Sapphire