With a flurry of new tie-ups between car marques and watch manufactures being announced recently, it’s nice to know that some of these partnerships do actually go the distance. IWC and Mercedes-AMG have worked together for the past 17 years — a lasting collaboration that convincingly backs up both parties’ assertions of being united by their commitment to handcraft and engineering excellence.
In that time, the partnership between IWC and the performance/sports-car division of Mercedes-Benz has led to the creation of several Ingenieur and Pilot’s watches, with the latest timepiece to emerge being the Pilot’s Watch Chronograph “AMG”. The model boasts a couple of interesting firsts: It’s the first 43mm IWC Pilot’s Watch Chronograph to be powered by the in-house calibre 69385, and is also the first Pilot’s Watch Chronograph to be made from titanium.
It is, however, not the first Pilot’s Watch Chronograph to feature this in-house chronograph movement with column wheel: At trade show Watches and Wonders in April, IWC released its new 41mm Pilot’s Watch Chronograph, which is powered by the same in-house calibre, instead of the previous Valjoux 7750-based movement. I had the chance to go hands on with that model, which comes in a steel case, and found it to fit surprisingly well even on my smaller wrist. However, it was undeniably on the heavy side. The AMG model, with its titanium case, should make for a more comfortable wearing experience, if your wrist is large enough to accommodate its formidable dimensions (43mm diameter, 14.9mm thickness).
A cool mix of silver, greys and blacks, the Pilot’s Watch Chronograph Edition is made from Grade 5 titanium. Its matte grey case finish is apparently inspired by Mercedes-AMG’s Selenite Grey Magno paint finish. The watch’s dial is made from that popular signifier of automotive racing — carbon fibre. The material, with its characteristic woven appearance, is known for its lightness and rigidity.
Inspired by the aesthetic of motorsport instruments, the watch features contrasting silver subdials, comprising a 30-minute chronograph counter, 12-hour chronograph counter and small seconds. Rounding off this sporty timepiece is a tinted sapphire caseback printed with the AMG logo, and a black embossed calf leather strap with a folding clasp. Fans who like what they see will be pleased to know that there will be more IWC-AMG Pilot’s Watch models to come. As IWC CEO Christoph-Grainger Herr promised as part of this launch, “We are proud to introduce Mercedes-AMG as a permanent feature of our Pilot’s Watch collection.”