Panasonic improves on energy performance and food life with new fridges

One of the larger whitegood companies with a local presence is showing off new wares this week, with three new models available in two colours showcasing new technology to help keep those fruit and veggies in top condition before they land in your mouth.

Panasonic’s introductions today add to more than 50 home appliances and whitegoods the company has introduced locally, with now just over half of what Panasonic sells in Australia coming out of this section.

Launched this week, the new refrigerators pack in technology designed to keep food in top notch condition, while saving you money on the home electricity bill.

That last point is especially important, with new research conducted by Panasonic, showing that 60 percent of surveyed consumers are concerned about the environment.

“Our search has shown that Australians are concerned about the environment, but lack the knowledge on how to make a difference,” said Richard Tassone, General Manager for Marketing at Panasonic Australia. “Panasonic’s range of EcoNavi products does this for you by taking the burden out of saving energy in the home.”

The new premium BR-BY552 holds 554 litres, features the "Vitaminsafe" vegetable crisper, and is available in white for $1,799 or stainless steel for $1,999.

The fridges launched this week take advantage of a technology Panasonic has been putting it in its appliances for a little over a year now, with EcoNavi first coming to our attention in 2011 with a washing machine.

EcoNavi technology differs in each device, but the basic understanding is a technology that uses sensors and computational power to determine energy requirements and performance.

In the new line of refrigerators, Panasonic is doing this with four sensors that analyse outside light, door opening times, room temperature, and the internal temperature of the fridge itself. This combination of technology can work out when to increase the cooling modes based on when you open the fridge door most, as well as when you’re likely to head to the kitchen to grab a snack.

If you’re the sort that jumps out of bed at midnight and runs down for a bite, the fridge will eventually work out your schedule and decrease temperatures for optimum cooling when you’re heading to the fridge on a consistent basis, working in what Panasonic calls a “smart eco mode”.

The new series of refrigerators also pack in 421, 465, or 554 litres depending on the model you’re after, with the premium 554 litre model arriving with a “Vitaminsafe” vegetable crisper. This technology takes advantage of blue and green LEDs and reduces the mineral and vitamin reduction that occurs when fruit and veggies are thrown in the fridge, in essence, simulating the effects of sunlight.

All the fridges in this series use a silver-coated filter that constantly cleans the circulating air to rid it of mould and bacteria, while air is blown from the rear panel and around the sides to encompass the food instead of blow it directly at it, reducing the chances of dehydration.

You’ll also find tempered glass shelves capable of holding up to 100 kilograms, door pockets large enough for 3 litre bottles, and a freezer drawer on the bottom of the fridge that slides out easily.

Panasonic’s energy rating for these new fridges is consistent throughout the series, with a three-star rating appearing on all of them.

You’ll be able to find them in stores in June, with the 421 litre NR-BW415 available from $1,299, the 465 litre NR-BW465 from $1,499, and the top range 554 litre NR-BY552 from $1,799, with both white and stainless steel options available.

The 415 litre NR-BW415 is available in both white ($1,299) and stainless steel ($1,499).