Miele WCR860 Washing Machine Review

Staggeringly expensive but staggeringly good.

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Verdict

The Miele WCR860 Washing Machine is one of the most expensive washing machines that you can buy – but if you want the best, it's money worth spending. With some of the most superior wash results we've ever seen, this washing machine is also one of the most frugal, using very little water and electricity for standard washes. With app control and automatic dosing via the CapDos system, this is a high-end washing machine for those people who demand the best.

Pros

  • Outstanding wash results
  • TwinDos works very well
  • Super-quiet in use
  • Impressive low energy and water usage

Cons

  • The best doesn’t come cheap
  • Door trim shows fingermarks

Key Specifications

  • Review Price: £1499.00
  • 9kg load
  • A+++ energy rating
  • 26 programmes
  • 9 wash options
  • 1600 spin speed
  • TwinDos system
  • Cap Dosing feature
  • QuickPowerWash
  • Smart/Wi-Fi Connected
  • 5-year guarantee

Miele’s W1 premium washing machines have never failed to impress, and the latest models look to do very much the same, albeit at their usual staggering price. The Miele WCR860 costs a whopping £1500, sitting in the upper echelons of a range that heads north of £2000 at the top. This model packs in TwinDos auto detergent dosing, CapDos add-ins, 1600 spin, plenty of smarts and mouse-quiet operation.

Comfortably taking top honours as the most desirable washer we’ve ever tested, the Miele WCR860 is staggeringly brilliant in every respect. It looks stunning, washes brilliantly, offers superb spin speeds and plenty of programmes, is bonkers-quiet even at full spin, and has the best features of any kitchen appliance we’ve yet to use. Yes, it’s ridiculously pricey – but if you want the very best then look no further.

Miele WCR860 – What you need to know

  • General wash performance: Staggeringly good, super-quiet general cleaning results across the board, enhanced by superb TwinDos auto-dosing detergent system
  • Stain removal: The WCR860 with UltraPhase detergent offers class-leading stain removal, with even better results possible thanks to CapDos specialist cleaners
  • Spin efficiency: This 1600 spin machine lives up to its A-class spin rating with a good dry and very low creasing. The special drum surface promises to be super-kind to your clothes too
  • Features and programmes: The WCR860 is fully loaded with 26 programmes, auto-dosing, a raft of wash options, near-silent operation, drum lights and the best smart appliance app we’ve tried
  • Running costs: Extremely low water and electricity costs are offset by expensive TwinDos detergent and the high asking price

Related: Best washing machine

Miele WCR860 – Stunning looks, features, performance and smarts, Miele’s WCR860 has it all

The WCR860 came to the test bench with a lot to prove, not least its value at an eye-watering £1500. Miele’s W1 machines have always scored top marks in our tests, so the latest has good provenance. But could the new look, new display and raft of new smart tech live up to the pedigree and continue to blow us away? Oh yes, it does.

The WCR860 is a 9kg machine with a drum that holds as much as some other brand’s 10kg models. That drum is fully lit with crisp white LEDs and has a hexagonal patterned surface designed to allow garments to slide gently over the surface cushioned by a thin film of water.

The perforations are recessed, numerous and tiny, so even objects as small as paperclips will stay in the drum rather than become sucked into the drain pump.

It’s driven by a cutting-edge low energy, low-noise ProfiEco motor and fronted by a sumptuously bold porthole door with mirror chrome trim. Nothing wrong with a bit of bling… other than the fingerprints, obviously.

The machine itself is coated in hard-wearing white enamel to resist scratches and chips over the long haul, and the fascia is sleek and contemporary. A large, crisp and high-contrast multi-colour touchscreen display and a single button are all you get.

The touchscreen is very responsive, never missing a press or swipe in our test, and the menu structure is easy to read and supremely logical. It uses big, bold icons and good-sized text on an inky-black background. Plus, there’s a handy help button on many screens, just in case you get lost.

You get 26 programmes to choose from as standard and more can be downloaded. If that leaves you in something a programme selection quandary, the Washing Assistant automatically selects a programme based on asking you what type, colour and soiling of clothing is going in the wash.

It then asks whether the load needs extra delicate treatment, whether anyone wearing them has allergies, whether the wash should be extra quiet for night use, and so on, until it builds the perfect programme for the wash and circumstances. You can then save that as a favourite to skip the 20 questions next time.

There’s a raft of wash options that covers just about every sane option you’d ever need: Quick, Eco, Water Plus, Extra Rinse, Single Wash (for very small loads), Pre-Iron (to reduce creasing), Pre-wash, Soak, Intensive, Allergowash (for allergy sufferers and delicate skin), Extra Gentle, Rinse Hold and Extra Quiet.

On that latter subject, the WCR860 is extremely quiet, being all but inaudible whilst gently turning your clothes to wash and a 1600 spin that’s best described a “hum”. And that was before we activated the Extra Quiet mode that promises to shave off a few decibels more.

The app replicates everything available on the touchscreen, as well as offering a host of data on levels of consumables, energy and water use. However, we had some real issues with the Android app stability during testing; it crashed on several occasions. Chances are that bug has been thwarted by the time you read this, but it did take a little lustre of an otherwise very polished operation.

Miele WCR860 – Automatic dosing and a range of specialist detergents make Miele’s WCR860 seriously versatile

Making a welcome return here is Miele’s TwinDos automatic dosing system for detergent and conditioner. A pair of full containers are supplied with the machine, but a replacement set costs £65 for a five-pack of 3 x UltraPhase 1 and 2 x Ultraphase 2 liquids. You can use your own favourite brand liquids in the cartridges by setting up custom TwinDos detergent in the app.

Miele also gives you the option of using a normal soap drawer and filling each time. Yet once you get used to TwinDos using precisely the right amount of consumables having sensed the load weight and soiling, saving you the agro of filling the drawer, there’s no going back.

Thankfully, the drawer itself isn’t fully redundant since it also homes the mounting slot for Miele’s funky CapDos capsules. CapDos allows you to automatically add special detergents for the likes of wool, sportswear, down-filled garments or clothes with stubborn stains. If our great test results on a stain-strip using a Booster Cap is anything to go by, they work exceptionally well – but aren’t cheap at £10 for six caps.

Even without the special caps, the Miele turns in a truly exceptional cleaning performance all round. Our regular stain strip came up super-clear, with even the serious turmeric stain test being almost entirely removed. This is a result we’ve seen on only a handful of machines over the past five years of testing.

General washing emerged from the drum looking only lightly creased, too, which is unusual from a 1600 spin machine. Spin performance wasn’t adversely affected, though, as the Miele consistently turned in A-rated spin performance on full loads and even better on half loads.

Peeking at the power measurements, on Eco programmes the WCR860 makes a mockery of A+++ energy efficiency, coming in with huge energy margin to spare. Our half load (3.6kg) test on Eco used under 0.4kWh (just 6p!) of electricity and less than 40 litres of water. Since most people tend to wash around 4kg on average, that’s stupendously lean on water and electricity for day-to-day use.

Just in-case the WCR860’s 5-year guarantee didn’t say all you need to know about Miele’s reliability, this model has Miele’s WPS (water protection system) built in. This features a tough, double-skinned inlet hose, automatic water shut-off valve and internal leak-sensors, backed up by Miele’s 20-year Water Protection Guarantee. That covers any damage caused to your home by a leak in the machine for the next two decades of use!

Miele’s latest W1 range has once again raised the bar for washing machine performance here at Trusted Reviews, and the WCR860 is a truly class-leading appliance all round.

The asking price is equally exceptional, in that it’s close to the most expensive washing machine we’ve ever tested. Thankfully, the WCR860 more than lives up to its premium price ticket with stunning performance, great looks, blisteringly good app smarts and a raft of fabulous features.

The WCR860 is simply the best washing machine we’ve tested.

Why buy the Miele WCR860?

The WCR860 is a money-no-object exercise in taking an old concept, the humble washing machine, and bringing it bang up to date with the latest tech and performance-enhancing features. And it works, too.

Blisteringly good wash results, super eco-friendly, super-quiet and packed to the porthole with genuinely useful features such as TwinDos, CapDos, drum lighting, a touchscreen and smart functionality, the Miele is a tour de force of engineering excellence delivering class-leading performance. Even those slightly nervous with all those electronics or “more to go wrong” should be happy with the 5-year guarantee.

The extra running costs of using Ultraphase liquids and CapDos specialist detergents are probably irrelevant to your purse if you’re in the market for a £1500 machine anyway. The best of anything never comes cheap, so if you can afford the WCR860 when you’re next in the market for washing machine then simply buy it – you won’t be disappointed.

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