After our Cheap Indesit died a death after a couple of years of service, we decided the cheaper machines were a false economy and decided to plump for the more expensive option, the Bosch WAE 2416 Silver.
A solid looking machine that really exudes quality. After around a year or so of use, we've not encountered any problems yet. We generally use the 30 degree option and our clothes come out almost dry and smelling fresh every time. So much better than our old Indesit which used to get pungent standing water sitting inside the rubber door seal.
The machine is also quicker than the quoted times for standard washes, taking probably between 30-40 minutes, with quoted times at well over an hour. With a 6kg drum, we're also doing fewer loads per week than previously and the machine also senses how much water to use per wash, depending on the weight of the load....clever!
The machine is operated via the usual dial system to select temperatures (between 30-90 degrees), easy care of cottons and delicate garments, spin and drain functions in case of a problem and a freshen up option, ideal for perking up an item or two that you don't have time to put through a full wash.
The other main options are operated via a touch button control system. You can select a spin speed at 4 intervals between 600 and 1200 RPM. There are also Reduced Ironing and Aqua Plus modes, the latter handy for those who suffer from alergies as it's designed to remove detergent residues from the wash.
This machine is part of the Clasixx range, which is their 'value' range. The Exxcel is the mid-range model with top of the range Logixx model completing the line up. Although this may be bottom of the Bosch range, it would certainly be placed highly compared to many of the other brands available. It is a fabulous trade off between value and performance, but manages to fulfill both criteria with flying colours.
I would have awarded this machine 10/10 but for one feature that gets annoying after a while. When the wash cycle is finished, a shrill, drawn out beep-beep-beep is emitted. Unlike our dishwasher that does a similar thing 3 times, the washer continues to call out to you "Come and empty me, for I am done!" until you go and open the door. Particularly annoying if you're in the middle of something, but I suppose good in a way, as your clothes are never left to fester in the damp conditions of the drum for very long.