Japanese Laundry Curiosity 2: Panasonic's FL
Greetings from Hong Kong again!
This year, Panasonic has introduced NA-V80GD as its top-of-the-line washer here. What is curious is that it is a FL made by a Japanese manufacturer in Japan.
As a fact, in recent years major appliance makers in Japan (Panasonic, Hitachi, Sanyo, Toshiba and Sharp) has introduced their horizontal axis washers as their top-of-the-line product-- TLs are their mainstream product, and some of them, like the TL combo I have introduced before, are still highly expensive products. Sanyo and Toshiba made top-loading H-axis washers while others made front-loading ones. All of them are combos.
As a fact, the NA-V80 is not new. Panasonic will introduce a second generation of its Lab (how they call their FLs in Japan) on November 21st.
All Labs have tilted drums (30 degrees), and Panasonic said it for easy loading (kids and wheelchair users can load and unload themselves, and the average adult need not to kneel down to load.). The rotational problems related to the tilted drum were dealt with with their in-house inverter DD motor. Their slanted baffles is also unseen in European FLs.
Their drying mechanism seemed different from their Europran counterparts also. While European combos would blow hot air from the front of the tub (at least from what I know of Italian Electrolux machines), the Lab blows hot wind from the back of the tub. Actually, the entire area of the tub back.
Also interesting is that in the normal spinning process, even if you choose not to dry, there would also be a flow of hot air to loosen clothes. And, as in all Japanese machines, all their ways to prevent tub mold.
The price of the Lab here is Miele levels: HK$ 9,120 (US$1,170).
Scans of the catalogue of the Lab (Bilangual Chinese-English:)