Today GE announced that it has been hard at work on a more than $100 million overhaul of its appliance manufacturing procedures, including an upgrade to "lean design," which allows for more flexibility and efficiency on the production line. The team also showcased new high-capacity top-load washers -- with matching dryers -- that were built on the recently renovated factory floor and are due in stores mid-October.
GE called this product reveal "the biggest revamp of its clothes care line in more than 20 years" in its official press release and shared details on three new top-load laundry pairs.
The $649 GTW485ASJ and the $599 GTW460ASJ washing machines come with standard agitators. According to GE, this classic top-load style is still among the most sought-after in the US. That's because it offers more control over laundry cycles thanks to a number of advanced features such as Extra Rise, Precise Fill and more. And, with 4.2 cubic feet of clothes-washing capacity, these agitator-outfitted machines are big -- the largest on the market, GE says.
The large appliance brand also unveiled a $699 washer without an agitator today, the 4.6-cubic-foot GTW680BSJ. Companion dryer units, available in both electric and gas versions, are set to debut this fall as well.
While GE's new lean facility will still be producing appliances in relatively large batches, it will also allow the team to manufacture an assortment of models in smaller groups at the same time, rather than traditional large-batch single-unit production. This effort to streamline the manufacturing process falls in line with the brand's ownmicrofactory, which focuses specifically on nimble, small-batch manufacturing.
We'll keep an eye on the official retail launch dates for GE's new washers and dryers and provide updates -- and reviews -- as soon as we can.