Diving Into History:

6 Milestone IWC Aquatimer Watches


A few years ago at SIHH, IWC released a slew of new models in its revamped IWC Aquatimer collection of luxury divers’ watches (Click here to check them out). For fans of vintage watches — and vintage IWC watches, specifically — we highlight here six important IWC Aquatimers from the brand’s history.

Milestone No. 1: First Aquatimer (1967)

IWC Aquatimer Ref. 812AD (1967)

In 1967, IWC reacted to the growing popularity of amateur scuba diving and launched its first divers’ watch. The first Aquatimer (Ref. 812AD) was water-resistant to 200 meters and became the foundation of a successful new watch family for the watch brand from Schaffhausen.

Milestone No. 2: Ocean 2000 (1982)

IWC Ocean 2000 Ref. 3500 (1982) Working closely with designer Ferdinand A. Porsche, IWC began producing the Ocean 2000 sports divers’ watch (Ref. 3500) in 1982. For a time replacing the Aquatimer in the collection, it was the first series-built divers’ watch in titanium, with a tested water-resistance to 2,000 meters.

Milestone No. 3: Aquatimer GST Automatic 2000 (1998)

IWC Aquatimer GST Automatic-2000 Ref. 3536 (1998) In 1998, IWC reinstated the traditional Aquatimer name and launched the Aquatimer GST Automatic 2000 (Ref. 3536), in a titanium case water-resistant to 2,000 meters, as part of a new line of sports watches.

Milestone No. 4: Aquatimer GST Deep One (1999)

IWC GST Deep One Ref. 3527 (1999) In 1999, IWC unveiled the Aquatimer GST Deep One (Ref. 3527). Also in a titanium case, it was the first IWC divers’ watch to incorporate a mechanical depth gauge, with a flyback hand for the maximum depth, and an internal rotating bezel to display dive times.

Milestone No. 5: Aquatimer Split Minute Chronograph (2004)

IWC Aquatimer Split-Minute Chronograph Ref. 3723 (2004) In 2004, with the Aquatimer Split Minute Chronograph (Ref. 3723), IWC launched a divers’ watch equipped with a world-first function: a split-minute hand that operated separately from the chronograph and could be activated or deactivated underwater, to a depth of 120 meters.

Milestone No. 6: Aquatimer Deep Two (2009)

IWC Aquatimer Deep Two Ref. 3547 (2009) In 2009, the Aquatimer Deep Two (Ref. 3547) from IWC Schaffhausen succeeded the GST Deep One. It included a precise mechanical depth gauge that showed current dive depth as well as the depth attained during a dive, to a maximum of 50 meters.

This article was originally published in 2014 and has been updated.

Would you like to see more important IWC watches?
Have a look at these 9 Historic IWC Pilot’s Watches!

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7 Responses to “6 Milestone IWC Aquatimer Watches”

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  1. Stefan Stäcker

    My vintage IWC Aquatimer, bought in 1972, has been matching expectations for many years of daily use. It still looks in a class of its own. The only draw-back is that since the last two services by the maker it cannot be waterproofed anymore. That is a great disappointment. A watch for life?

    Reply
  2. Robinoz

    I prefer the 2009 version. I like the colour and display and having a steek strap that is interchangeable is better than a corporate rubber strap. When they wear out, they cost a fortune to replace even thought they are probably made in China for pennies a piece.

    Reply
  3. A friend

    Just letting you know that your chronograph picture is incorrect and in fact you duplicated the Deep One photo

    Reply
    • Mark Bernardo

      Thanks for the catch! We’ve updated the article with the correct photo.

      Reply
  4. Spiros

    Interesting presentation. Now that the Porsche with its different proposal is gone and the need for a scuba watch is “0” due to the diving computers etc, I wonder if the desk diving watches will survive and what the major brands will be offering in the near future. Is the Rolex and its submariner going to completely dominate the market and increase… the price as well , with an excuse of a better… model???

    Reply
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