IWC's main automatic movement for the late 1950s, Cal. 853/8531, was updated around 1963 to become this Cal. 854. Although Cal. 853 and earlier IWC automatic movements measured 13 ligne, Cal. 854 was slightly smaller at 12.5 ligne. Once again, a date version was also available, Cal. 8541.
Cal. 854 lasted into the quartz crisis and was the last of its line. From 1975, IWC used a modified Jaeger-LeCoultre movement, Cal. 3254, for higher-end watches and a modified ETA movement, Cal. 375, or a quartz movement for lower-priced models.
Cal. 854 was available in 21, 23, and 25 jewel variants. The latter features an excenter winding mechanism with ruby rollers. It is adjusted by means of screws on the balance spokes. Some versions feature hacking seconds.
Date on Cal. 8541 is quick-set by moving the time between 23 45 and 24 00, an unusually quick version of this feature.
The later variants of this movement, marked with the letter “B”, feature 23 or 25 jewels.