Ever since I became seriously interested in watches, finding a good example of an IWC was a mission. Finally, here it is, not a good example but a perfect example! This 1972 stainless steel model; with a monocoque case and the 8541 automatic movement was fully restored in 1993 by IWC in Schaffausen, Switzerland.
The 8541 25 jewel movement is a beautiful piece of watchmaking craft, one of the best automatic movements ever made. It features some unique features; an excenter winding mechanism, brequet overcoil hair spring, adjustment screw weights on the balance arms for micro adjustment and several other features not found in lesser watches.
162,000 of these movements were produced from 1963-1974, although the basic design goes back to 1946. Its first predecessor went into production in 1950.
In the mid 60s Seiko used a simplified version of the excenter winding mechanism in its automatics, a series of which became the most comercialy successful automatic movement of all time and its descendant is still in production.
The IWC (International Watch Company) is quality through and through; the dial, hands, case but the style is very uninspiring and conservative.
Like a Rolls Royce, what it lacks in style it makes up in quality and elegance.