Early Ingenieurs are emblematic of IWC in design and substance. The German side of Switzerland has always prided itself in inventive problem-solving and militant (perhaps a poor choice of adjective) precision. This second generation 866 Ingenieur tethers these brand principles to a sort of bauhausian Mk XI design. What resulted is a quite iconic, useful, and innovative design. Though the 666 generation of Ingenieur is now valuable enought to be in the auction house circuit, 866 example have yet to skyrocket.
Sigma dials, in IWC as most Swiss watchmakers, denote the use of precious metal. This is a steel case, but the radially silvered dial shown here is actually silver. IWC’s classic fish crown is paired with a screw back and iron faraday cage. The seconds hand of this generation features a large square plot of tritium known as the ‘robatayaki’. Its caliber 8541B features hacking seconds, fast-forward date, and a higher winding efficiency than the 866. This is a rare variant of Ingenieur and it will likely be some time before another as lovely appears.
This example sports a light patina on its case with no visible crystal markings. The dial and hands are perfect, with an evenly yellowed tritium. It movement is shown to be in fantastic condition with no serious wear visible. The watch is sold on an original IWC 69-3 Gay Freres bracelet with an original IWC clasp. The clasp has not been worn gently. All told, this is a beautiful watch that demonstrates a serious level of taste in watches, all without having to take out a small loan.
Find this 866A here from Eguchi Japan for ~8600 USD.