Hitachi are not the first and most obvious brand to spring to mind when in the market for a kettle, and this model is about the only one they do, I believe. But, I bought one as I had spent ages looking high and low for a kettle big enough to fill our two enormous mugs we bought at Alton Towers last year...
This kettle does what all kettles do, that is, boil water. But not many have a whopping 2 litre capacity when full, and you'd be surprised how often that 2 litres can be useful. When cooking, let's say, pasta and vegetables in saucepans, that's at least half of it gone, and the other half can be used for a cup of tea, or maybe to wash up with.
So, what comes in the box, and what does this kettle look and perform like?
IN THE BOX: Very simple really, firstly a round base made of heavyweight plastic with a brushed steel ring around the outside, with plug connected to 1 metre of cable. On the underneath is written 'Hitachi' and the voltage and watts used (3000w), as well as 'Made in China'. Secondly, the kettle itself, which fits onto the round base by use of a central round plug and socket system, very common these days. The kettle is again made of heavyweight and sturdy plastic, with a brushed steel shell.
LOOKS: The brushed steel effect is a much better choice for a heavy use item such as a kettle, as it is not a mirror finish and thus doesn't show up fingerprints so easily. It fits in well with most kitchen styles. The overall shape of the kettle is not such a selling point, as it does look rather like a glorified jug, though the handle is a nice bit of design.
When switched on, both sides of the kettle where the water level shows glow a dark blue colour, very effective in a darkened kitchen.
PERFORMANCE: Although this is classified as a 'high speed' kettle using 3000 watts, if you fill it up to its maximum 2 litres it does seem to take a while to boil. I have used faster kettles, certainly. However it switches off when boiled in good time, not filling up the kitchen with steam first like a few do.
To add water there is a quite clever little button on the top of the handle at the rear of the lid which when pressed, releases a spring lever and the kettle lid flips up gently. The spout is also wide enough to be able to add water without lifting the lid at all.
The inner bottom of the kettle is completely flat, which is great for those in hard water areas, making furring up much easier to deal with. There are water level indicators on both sides, which are nice and wide and easy to read.
The noise produced is no more than average for a kettle of this type, and the kettle does not have any whistle facilities built-in.
OVERALL: A well-built and reliable kettle, catering for those with a need for larger quantities of boiling water. Price is a little on the high side at £79.99 average in 2009, but there aren't too many competitors at the 2 litre capacity level.
Short name: Hitachi KET2