Watches & Wonders 2021: IWC releases Big Pilot’s Watch Shock Absorber XPL

Photo: IWC Schaffhausen

Are you in for a shock? Because IWC Schaffhausen has just presented its latest innovation, the Big Pilot’s Watch Shock Absorber XPL at the digital edition of Watches & Wonders 2021 in Geneva.

The first watch to feature the luxury watch brand’s new patented shock absorber system, the SPRIN-g PROTECT system is based on a cantilever spring that keeps the movement suspended within the case and protected against g-forces caused by various forms of impact.

The innovation took eight years to perfect, which involved advanced simulation tools and a painstaking design process. The usage of Bulk Metallic Glass (BMG) makes the material more elastic than conventional metals, while the ultralightweight titanium case makes sure the shock absorber has less mass to hold.

Photo: IWC Schaffhausen

Furthermore, the IWC manufactured 32115 calibre used in the IWC Big Pilot’s Watch Shock Absorber XPL is custom-made to be as lightweight as possible, using a high-tech aluminium alloy commonly seen in the aerospace industry.

“Ever since F.A. Jones founded IWC more than 150 years ago, engineering and innovation have been at the core of our DNA. Today, we continue this heritage with our new engineering division, IWC Experimental, which drives cutting-edge developments in areas like advanced materials or g-protection.”

Christoph Grainger-Herr, CEO of IWC Schaffhausen

The SPRIN-g PROTECT system has even been tested in collaboration with Cambridge University to measure the effects of impacts on the movement. The result? Protection from extreme forces from accelerations in excess of 30,000 g.

If you’re wondering what XPL stands for, it’s ‘experimental’, as the IWC Big Pilot’s Watch Shock Absorber XPL was created by IWC’s Experimental engineering division. Available in a matte black finish in a futuristic and lightweight IWC-developed material called Ceratanium, the watch is limited to 10 pieces per year and a total of just 30 overall.

Photo: IWC Schaffhausen

Order the watch through your nearest IWC boutique or try it on virtually with the all-new IWC App using augmented reality (AR) – now available on the Apple App Store for iOS users.

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