IWC Schaffhausen

The Aquatimer Family


    The new Aquatimer collection has undergone a carefully orchestrated process of technical and optical development.


    IWC supports the Charles Darwin Foundation, which devotes itself to the preservation of the Galapagos Islands' biodiversity.


    In the Aquatimer Chronograph Edition “Expedition Charles Darwin” (Ref. IW379503), IWC Schaffhausen uses bronze in a watch case for the first time ever and upholds its tradition of developing innovative and modern diver’s watches.


    The "laboratory of evolution" is severely endangered by, among other things, imported animal and plant species, settlement and over-fishing.


    The new external/internal rotating bezel gives the current Aquatimer collection overall a more sophisticated look and feel.


    IWC is deeply committed to the Cousteau Society, which dedicates itself to preservation of the world's oceans.

Rotate Left

If the external rotating bezel is moved to the left, the internal rotating bezel turns with the dive time scale.

Rotate Right
Aquatimer Automatic
Reference IW329002
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IWC SafeDive System

The innovative external/internal rotating bezel prevents the dive time setting from being accidentally moved.

The most conspicuous technical modification on the new Aquatimers is the external/internal rotating bezel. For safety reasons, the internal rotating bezel can only be turned anticlockwise. This guarantees that even if the external rotating bezel is inadvertently moved, the dive time – during which the diver can return to the surface with no need for decompression stops – is not exceeded.

See Inside The Watch

The IWC Aquatimer Collection 2014

Basking in the sunshine on the igneous black rock, the iguanas – both terrestrial and marine varieties – look more like fairy-tale dragons. The flamingos and turtles enjoy the warmth on land. In glittering, turquoise and green coves, squadrons of manta rays patrol the shallows while sea lions cavort in the cool waters of the Humboldt Current. Hammerheads circle at lower depths. The Galapagos Islands, 1,000 kilometres from the South American mainland, are one of the last natural paradises on earth. Forty percent of the fauna living in the archipelago can only be found here.

The budding British naturalist Charles Darwin visited the Galapagos Islands in 1835 in the course of an expedition. He found a unique plant and animal ecosystem that differed from one island to the next. The observations he made here formed the essence of his lifework “The Origin of Species”, which was published in 1859, and has since been the basis of the modern theory of evolution. This year, in honour of the ingenious researcher and his Galapagos expedition, IWC is pleased to unveil a special edition, housed in a bronze case.

Aquatimer Deep Three
Reference IW355701

Depth gauge

The third generation of the IWC diver’s watches with a mechanical depth gauge, the Aquatimer Deep Three in a titanium case, is a perfect example of watchmaking evolution: it is even safer, more functional and easier to use than ever before. Using three parameters – elapsed dive time, maximum depth reached during the dive and the seconds hand – the diver can plan any necessary decompression stops and remain at the necessary depth to conclude the dive safely and successfully.

Scroll down to see the dive depth and maximum depth indicators demonstrate the functions of the mechanical depth gauge.

Exactly 136 years after Darwin, “Captain” Jacques Cousteau set course for the archipelago with his research vessel, the Calypso. He wanted to make a close-up study of the Galapagos marine iguanas, the creatures Darwin had called the “imps of darkness”. Cousteau’s film “The Dragons of Galapagos” helped generate more awareness of the islands’ sensitive ecological balance above and below the surface. In 2014, IWC is dedicating a special edition of the Aquatimer to the passionate inventor, researcher and film-maker for the sixth time.

In response to the destruction of the environment of the Galapagos Islands, the Charles Darwin Foundation (CDF) was founded in 1959 and the Charles Darwin Research Station, based on the island of Santa Cruz, in 1964. The Research Station, which celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2014, is dedicated to preserving the delicate ecosystem. As part of an international network, more than 100 scientists and voluntary helpers share the findings of their scientific research on the protection of fauna and flora.

Their research work and successful control of invasive species is both labour-intensive and costly. However, both the Charles Darwin Foundation and the Charles Darwin Research Station are largely dependent on donations to continue operating. For many years now, IWC has felt a deep sense of responsibility towards the principle of sustainability and makes a sizeable contribution to both charitable organizations to enable them to keep up their good work.

IWC Schaffhausen has had close connections with diving since the 1960s. In 1967, its growing popularity prompted the company to introduce the first Aquatimer. It was pressure-resistant to 20 bar and featured an internal rotating bezel to display dive time. In 1982, the first diver’s watch in titanium, pressure-resistant to 200 bar with an external rotating bezel, created a sensation: the Ocean 2000. In 1997, IWC rolled out the GST sports watch line, which rapidly became synonymous with ruggedness combined with suitability for everyday use. The inventive ethos of IWC’s engineers led to the GST Deep One in 1999. This striking diver’s watch in a titanium case was the first IWC watch to feature a mechanical depth gauge. The latest collection has a worthy successor in the Aquatimer Deep Three. In 2009, IWC brought a completely revised Aquatimer collection onto the market. The diver’s watches featured a chunky external rotating bezel with an inset sapphire glass whose underside was treated with a thick coating of Super-LumiNova®*.

The new 2014 Aquatimer collection has a more discreet look with more subdued colours than the previous generation. After all, IWC diver’s watches are no longer reserved exclusively for underwater use but are often found in expeditions on terra firma, at festive occasions or even in the office. The watches are also more functional and safer, and even more Aquatimer models are now fitted with IWC-manufactured movements.

The most conspicuous new development is the case design with the new external/internal rotating bezel. It combines the advantages of an internal rotating bezel with the ease of use of an external rotating bezel. The external rotating bezel with its SafeDive system can be moved simply and precisely in steps of one minute, even when wearing diving gloves or with cold fingers. For safety reasons it can only be turned anticlockwise. This ensures that even if a diver moves the bezel accidentally, zero hour – the time at which he can return safely to the surface without the need for decompression stops – is not exceeded.

Aquatimer Chronograph Edition "Expedition Charles Darwin"
Aquatimer Chronograph Edition "Expedition Charles Darwin"

—Reference 3795

The new rotating bezel concept also changes the appearance of the latest Aquatimer generation. Thanks to the narrower bezel with the chamfered inner surface, the watch appears less bulky, and this is even taking into account the new cover for the sliding clutch system at “9 o’clock”. The purist-inspired, discreetly coloured dial leans on the design of the first Aquatimer in 1967. The typically elaborate case finishing with alternating polished and brushed surfaces helps underscore the luxurious look and feel of the new collection. In future, all Aquatimers will feature the traditional fish symbol showing the permitted dive depth in bar on the back of the case.

The Super-LumiNova®* coating for the dive time scale on the internal bezel guarantees excellent legibility no matter how poor the visibility. The two colours of the glowing figures in darkness are also an aid to orientation on the dial. And with the new IWC bracelet quick-change system, swapping the stainless-steel bracelet for the rubber strap, and vice versa, is a snap.

The new Aquatimer generation represents another step in the further technical evolution of IWC diver’s watches. This process of continuous improvement and development is a prime example of what is probably Darwin’s best-known quotation: “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.”

*IWC Schaffhausen is not the legal owner of the Super-LumiNova® trademark.

Explore the Aquatimer Family