With IWC Certificate of Authenticity dated 24 July 2014 confirming the delivery of the present watch on 17 January 1948.
The reference 325 offered here for sale is an extremely charismatic and rare specimen of the legendary " Portugieser " model, impressing with the colour of its dial which over time has changed from silvered to a uniform tangerine tone hardly seen in any other watch from the period, rendering it an extremely appealing and very unique look.
The successive transforming of the colour from silvered or white to the present tone was not planned by IWC but is rather a consequence of a natural oxidation process of the paint, presumably caused by various atmospheric influences and sunlight.
Furthermore preserved in very good, original overall condition, the present "Portugieser" reference 325 is a rare trophy for the collector of this exceptional timepiece.
In the late 1930s, IWC received a rather unusual order from a customer in Portugal who requested a wristwatch with the same size and accuracy of a pocket watch. To comply with his request, IWC chose their at the time slimmest and most reliable calibre 74 movement and cased it in stainless steel. With its impressive diameter of 43 mm, the Portuguese (Portugieser in German) was considered enormous compared to wristwatches popular at the time, not corresponding to the Zeitgeist of the period, more oriented towards smaller, Art Deco style watches. As a consequence, only a very limited series of the model was made.
Its main design features are a sober, easy to read streamlined dial with Arabic numbers, a slender bezel to make the watch look even larger, leaf hands and a large subsidiary seconds dial at six o'clock. Although IWC used a variation of dial layouts, hands and numerals, the most common combination was a silvered dial with embossed Arabic numerals and leaf ("feuilles de sauge") hands. The majority of the Portugieser watches made during the 1940s and 1950s was fitted with calibre 98, an upgraded version of the original calibre 74.
The Portugieser, the first wristwatch using a pocket watch movement, can be considered a precursor of today's large size wristwatches. A legend and classic amongst collectors, the revolutionary model is one of IWC's signature pieces and the obvious choice to celebrate the company's 125th anniversary in 1993 with the launch of a limited edition of total 1000 examples. Since then, the "Portugieser" series of watches comprising nearly every conceivable horological complication has been one of IWC's most successful lines.