Weber Genesis Review: Hands-On With The New 2022 Smart Grill

Weber Genesis Review

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The Genesis lineup of gas grills was upgraded in the Spring of 2022 with what Weber claims is their “biggest gas grilling innovation in 15 years”.

Today I’m reviewing the range-topping Genesis SPX-435 Smart Gas Grill to see if it truly lives up to the hype.

I’ll also be sharing my thoughts on the overall Genesis lineup, and letting you know if it’s worth the hype, and help you decide which grill is right for you.

Weber supplied this grill for free in return for my honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Weber Genesis 2022 overview and first impressions 

I was pleased to see that Weber has updated the entire Genesis lineup, so you don’t need to pay for the top option to get any of the new features.

At the time of writing, the range starts at $999.00 for the three-burner E-325 and goes all the way up to to $2,099.00 for the SPX-435 Smart Gas Grill I’m reviewing today.

The Genesis range comprises 28(!) different models, with confusing labels like S-325s and SX-325s. Working out the differences is enough to do your head in.

Thankfully Weber has a “Build Your Genesis” feature that allows you to select all your options and see how the price changes in real-time so you don’t have to worry about picking the right model number.

Configurable options include:

  • Liquid propane or piped natural gas
  • 3 or 4 Burners
  • Weber CRAFTED
  • Weber CONNECT Smart Technology
  • Lighting (only available if you include Weber CONNECT)
  • Color

I’ll go through the various options and let you know if they are worth spending your money on.

The grill I’m testing is the top-of-the-range Genesis SPX-435 Smart Gas Grill which comes with four burners, an extra large sear zone, a side burner, and a side shelf.

This is not a small grill. Coming in at 68.5 inches wide and 48.1 inches high with 994 square inches of cooking space, it’s an absolute beast. 

Weber Genesis SPX-435 gas grill with an open lid

Weber Genesis SPX-435 specifications:

Cooking Area994 square inches (646 main rack + 348 top rack)
Total Burner BTUs48,000 BTUs – main burners
12,000 BTUs – sear zone burner
12,000 BTUs – side burner
Dimensions48.1” H x 68.5“ W x 27“ D
ConstructionStainless steel
Fuel TypeLiquid Propane
Shelves and StorageSide shelves, six hooks for utensils and tools, fully enclosed bottom storage cart, and side grill locker cabinet
Wifi/AppYes. Weber CONNECT Smart Technology
Warranty12 years – cookbox and lid assembly
10 years – burner tubes, cooking grates and flavorizer bars
3 years – WEBER CONNECT Components
5 years – all remaining parts
Price Check Latest Price at Weber

One of the big new changes in 2022 is the CRAFTED frame kit.

This is a new version of the Gourmet BBQ accessory System (GBS) that Weber had with the Kettle.

This optional upgrade package adds a side burner, and storage locker and lets you swap out different accessories such as a searing gratebaking stone, or griddle.

Switching between the different accessories is painless and elevates the whole grilling experience.

Weber Genesis SPX-435 ser grate with meat steaks
The searing grate is a must-have for that hot sear and beautiful cross hatch marks on your steak.

Another big change is the optional Weber connect smart technology which allows you to monitor your food in real time with notifications on your phone.

The wireless system serves as an internal temp guide for your grill and for the food you’re cooking with wired probes. 

The grill lighting is a nice touch for those cooking at night. My patio does have overhead lighting, so it’s not essential for me. However, with the grill lid open, sometimes it causes shadows and having a light right there on top of the grates is a welcomed addition.

The grill knobs also light up with a touch of a button, and it really makes them stand out for easy use.

Plus, it just pops at night and looks so good! 

What we like:

  • 48,000 BTUs – The grill gets plenty hot. Great for searing and gives you tons of flexibility. 
  • Large sear zone Perfect for getting that nice crust on your steaks 
  • Tons of storage Easily hide your propane tank underneath the grill and store accessories 
  • Easy to clean The stainless steel surface is very easy to clean/ wipe off and the grates are easily removed
  • All in one – This grill has everything you need from a sear zone, side burner, removable cooking surfaces and WIFI technology with quick response. 

What we don’t like: 

  • Wheels are small – For such a big grill, the wheels seem tiny and to lock them in place is a little tricky. 
  • Assembly felt questionable at times – Specifically plugging in and running wires. 

If you’re looking for a free-standing grill with all of the bells and whistles the new Weber Genesis is an obvious choice.

It feels like having a full outdoor kitchen with all the storage, side prep table, night vision grill lighting, and just the overall build quality. This grill will last you a long time and can be the centerpiece of your backyard for years to come.

Unboxing and setting up the new Genesis

This is a big grill and required quite a bit of assembly.

The instructions were straightforward but assembly still took about two hours, and I did need the help of someone else during a few stages of the build. 

There are also quite a few wires to be plugged in and ran underneath to get the Weber Connect system and the grill lights working properly.

I was a little nervous that after assembly that something would short out from me not following the directions properly, but to my surprise, everything worked great on the first start up. 

If you don’t opt for the lighting or Connect system assembly will be quite a bit easier.

Weber Genesis build quality

Weber does pay attention to detail, and the quality of the materials used for this grill is excellent.

Everything is well built, and this is a grill that will last a very long time. Weber provides a warranty ranging from 3 years for Weber Connect components, ten years for burner tubes, cooking grates, and flavorizer bars to 12 years for the cookbox and lid assembly. 

Weber Genesis SPX-435 caster wheels

A couple of things I couldn’t get past is why Weber cheaped out on wheels.

Such a large and heavy grill needs heavy-duty casters and wheels to move it around.

Also, the locking mechanism for the wheels is hard to push down and sometimes gets stuck.

I suppose most people will not be lugging their grill back and forth on their patio once they have it where they want, but still, it’s something left to be desired. 

My experience cooking on the new Weber Genesis

I do a lot more low and slow smoking than gas grilling. Most of my experience with gas grills has been on a cheap Char-Bril, so I was excited to see what it was like to cook on the Genesis.

The built in ignitor starts each burner quickly, and each grill can be started independently so no waiting for the burner to ignite.

Weber Genesis SPX-435 control display
Digital controller gives you the temperature of your grill like a pellet grill would

The grill gets up to temp in minutes. I was able to get the grill as hot as 600°F in about 10 minutes with the lid closed. In another five minutes, I was hitting 700°F. I’ve owned a few other gas grills, and the Weber gets hotter than any of those I’ve used before.

Of course with the size of the Weber, it does take some time to heat up which is expected.

There is also plenty of space to cook for a large family or group of friends, and everything you need and want is right at the touch of your fingers.

I love grilling steaks and chicken on the grill, and I was able to get nice sear marks on all my proteins and cook everything pretty quickly, which is always a plus when you have hungry guests or kids.

The interchangeable grilling accessories from Weber CRAFTED is a nice touch and allow customization and more cooking options. I was able to test out the sear grate and baking stone.

With the sear grate, I was able to get nice grill marks and sear on just about everything I tested it on including chicken, steak, and even fish.

There’s nothing worse than putting a piece of meat on the grill, flipping it over with anticipation, and not seeing those defined grill marks. The sear grate heats up nice and hot and gives you that cross-hatch mark every backyard griller loves to see.

As the juices from the meat drip down, it brings the flame a little higher, kissing the food and adding even more flavor. This is a must-have accessory, in my opinion.

Weber Genesis SPX-435 baking stone

The baking stone is a cool accessory and is great for pizzas, pie and cookies just to name a few. It’s a nice addition but one I don’t think I will be using too much as it’s just as easy to pop those in the oven for me.

The side burner gives you even more flexibility when you need it and is useful for sauteeing veggies like corn, or beans that aren’t as easily grillable, or warming a sauce.

Sometimes side burners are an afterthought and take a while to heat up. I wouldn’t say this side burner is the best I’ve ever seen, but I was happy with the heat output. It’s nice to be able to grill your main dish while you have your sides cooking.

Heat distribution

To test the heat distribution of the Genesis, I went with the ole bread test.

I heated the grill on medium then spread out pieces of bread evenly onto the grill. I placed pieces towards the back and the front spread out all the way across.  After about two minutes, I flipped the bread and was able to see where the hotspots were based on how much or how little the bread was toasted.

bread slices on Weber Genesis SPX-435 gas grill

The back of the grill was the hottest, and even hotter was the middle of the sear zone, as expected. The front of the grill, aside from the sear zone, was fairly even in terms of heat distribution. 

I wasn’t overly surprised as most grills tend to get hotter in the back and I was happy to see that the sear zone was even hotter as advertised. After all, it would be disappointing if it wasn’t. 

Storage and prep areas

If you get the grill with the side burner there is a lid that covers the burner, so you can use the entire surface as a side shelf.

On the opposite side is an extra large prep and serve table to make life easier when you have lots to cook.

Don’t forget about the storage cabinet underneath the grill, which conveniently stores the propane tank as well as a removable drip pan underneath the sear zone to keep everything clean.

Weber Genesis SPX-435 storage space

There is also a smaller side grill locker cabinet which is part of the Weber CRAFTED upgrade and is great for storing grilling utensils, probes, chopping boards, and other accessories. The storage space is a good size, and I was able to fit all of my essentials.

For those that already have outside storage you may not need it, but at the same time having everything all in one is just convenient. 

Cleaning the grill 

Cleaning the grill is pretty easy. Starting on the outside, everything is stainless steel and wipes down great. I use the same cleaning spray I use on my stainless steel appliances and it works wonders on the Weber. I can wipe everything clean and have it shiny in minutes.

Weber Genesis SPX-435 drip pan

Underneath the grill, there is a removable drip pan under the sear station which is also very convenient. The grill grates on top also clean pretty well and removing them to access the flavorizer bars is straightforward and manageable. 

Should you buy the Weber Genesis SPX-435 Smart Gas Grill?

A fully kitted-out Genesis is one of the most advanced propane grills on the market.

If you spend a lot of time cooking and always find yourself feeding a bunch of people, this may be the grill for you.

Weber Genesis SPX-435 grill knobs lighting

The number of customization options is impressive and allows you to pay for the features you need and save on the things you won’t use.

While the base model is still an excellent grill, I would highly recommend you add the Weber CRAFTED system, which also includes the Side Burner & Grill Locker.

Whether you go for the 3 or 4 burners and liquid or natural gas will come down to your personal needs.

If you decide to go for the 4 burner version you get the Weber CRAFTED system added by default.

Weber CONNECT is nice, but I wouldn’t consider it an essential upgrade, especially if you already have a good meat thermometer.

If you have the dollars to spend and want to be able to do it all then you may as well add it on, and that will give you the options to add the lighting which is a real show stopper.

With the new Genesis lineup, Weber has raised the bar and would be our pick for the best freestanding gas grill for the money.

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