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Weber Performer Premium vs Deluxe (2021): What’s The Difference?

When talking about the best Weber grills, the Kettle is always on the list. There are no surprises there. But although the Kettle hasn’t changed much in form, some of the newer charcoal grills have expanded on this classic. Take for example the Weber Performer Premium and Performer Deluxe. By adding a work table to the Kettle Premium, the iconic grill transforms into a powerful and versatile cooking system.

Now, the Deluxe edges out the Premium by including a propane ignition system. But is that its only advantage? Is it enough reason to opt for the Deluxe over the Premium? Read our review below to find out.

Weber Performer Premium vs Deluxe Comparison Chart

ModelWeber Performer Premium Charcoal GrillWeber Performer Deluxe Charcoal Grill
 Weber 15401001 Performer Premium Charcoal Grill, 22-Inch, BlackWeber 15501001 Performer Deluxe Charcoal Grill, 22-Inch, Touch-N-Go Gas Ignition System, Black
PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
FuelCharcoalCharcoal
Total Cooking Area363 sq. in.363 sq. in.
Tool HooksYes, 3 hooksYes, 3 hooks
Glass-Reinforced Nylon HandlesYesYes
All-Weather WheelsYesYes
Removable LCD TimerYesYes
Touch-N-Go IgnitionNoYes
ThermometerBuilt-inBuilt-in
Dimensions (HxWxD)43.5″ x 48″ x 30″43.5″ x 48″ x 30″
WarrantyUp to 10 years for bowl & lidUp to 10 years for bowl & lid

Design

The Weber Performer Premium and Deluxe largely share the same form and design features.

Weber Performer Premium vs Deluxe Design
On the left, the Weber Performer Premium; on the right, the Performer Deluxe.

Imagine the Weber Kettle on wheels—that’s how the Performer Premium and Deluxe look like. Both charcoal grills feature the now-iconic bowl and lid of the original. The parabolic shape is unchanged and is designed for even circulation. Meanwhile, the grill’s steel frame is coated in porcelain enamel for corrosion resistance. On top of the lid, you’ll find an ergonomic handle. There’s a built-in thermometer, too, along with a lid holder on the side of the grill.

Where these Performer series grills deviate from the Kettle is the cart with the side table as its defining feature. The new component adds a spacious prep area to the cooking system. Underneath the grills, you’ll find enough room to store your essentials. Meanwhile, caster wheels keep these grills mobile. There’s also a dedicated weather-proof charcoal storage bin.

You’re not limited, however, to stowing away charcoal in this component. Some utilize it for their grill accessories or even as a trash bin. With the Deluxe, keep in mind that the bin shares space with a propane tank for the gas ignition. Lastly, the Weber Performer Premium is available only in black. The Performer Deluxe, on the other hand, comes in black, copper, and green.

Cooking System

The Weber Performer Premium and Deluxe both work with the Gourmet BBQ System.

Weber Performer Premium vs Deluxe Cooking System
Here’s a closer look at the hinged steel grates (left) and the roomy bowls (right) of the Weber Performer grills.

When it comes to cooking, the Performer Premium and Deluxe share the same features. These grills work with what Weber calls the Gourmet BBQ System. Out of the box, both models will come with standard steel cooking grates. The grates are hinged, allowing owners to easily add charcoal while grilling. But this standard component is replaceable with other Gourmet BBQ System accessories, too. These include units like a griddle, pizza stone, or cast iron sear grate.

Although the actual grill is compact, you still get 363 square inches of cooking surface. That’s large enough to fit 13 burgers. Combined with the design of the bowl and lid, both the Weber Performer Premium and Deluxe ensure even and consistent heating, too. Weber includes two charcoal baskets for the grills. These baskets can be moved around the roomy bowl, allowing users to create different heat zones. Weber’s charcoal grills also feature a damper on the lid to control the temperature without opening the lid.

Special Features

Unlike the Weber Performer Premium, the Performer Deluxe boasts a charcoal ignition system.

Weber Performer Premium vs Deluxe Special Features
The Weber Performer Deluxe comes with heat-shielded handles (left) and a gas-powered ignition system (right).

Of course, the work table is the highlight for both models. It certainly makes it easier to prep ingredients next to the grill. At the front of the table, you also get three tool hooks. Right next to the hooks are removable LCD timers. On the Weber Performer Deluxe, this component is larger since it also houses the Touch-N-Go feature. It’s this intuitive ignition system that gives the Deluxe an edge over the Premium. If you’re not a fan of manually lighting the charcoal, then the Touch-N-Go is a welcome addition.

A Weber charcoal grill, however, isn’t complete without thoughtful features. Both the Performer Premium and Deluxe, for instance, boast heat-guarded handles for safety. The base of the grills is equipped with a one-touch cleaning system, too. It’s essentially a pit where ashes are caught. Aside from making ash disposal less messy, the cleaning system works as part of the ventilation system, too. The base features vents that can be opened and closed to control the grill’s oxygen consumption.

Accessories

Homeowners can enhance their grill experience with a range of tools and accessories.

Weber Performer Premium vs Deluxe Care and Accessories
Weber’s Rapidfire Chimney Starter (left) and the Premium Grill Cover for the Performer Premium and Deluxe (right).

Prepping for a backyard barbecue is as much about the grill accessories as it is the grill itself. With Weber’s charcoal grills, the range of tools and cookware is quite expansive. The Gourmet BBQ system, for instance, includes a variety of special grates and griddles. The same lineup even features poultry roasters and pizza stones.

Homeowners can also get their hands on spatula sets, brushes, premium gloves, and barbecue mitts. Weber offers standalone temperature probes, grilling baskets, and grilling pans, too. This is on top of a variety of cleaning tools available from the brand, as well as protective covers for the Performer series grill carts.

Verdict

Unless you need a charcoal ignition system, then the Weber Performer Premium is a more practical choice than the Weber Performer Deluxe.

Weber’s Performer charcoal grills add a functional side table to the original Kettle Premium. This makes for an all-in-one system where you can prep ingredients right next to the grill. But there are few differences between the Weber Performer Premium and Performer Deluxe. In fact, it boils down to just two points. First, the Performer Deluxe comes in black, copper, and green finishes as well. The Premium model is only available in a black variant.

Next, the Deluxe features a gas-powered ignition system. This component is arguably its main selling point over the Performer Premium. But while it makes prepping up the grill faster, in reality, it’s not a huge benefit over just manually lighting up charcoal. Unless you need this Touch-N-Go ignition, then the Performer Premium is a more practical and affordable purchase.

FAQs

📌 What is the difference between the Weber Performer Premium and Performer Deluxe?

The Weber Performer Premium and Performer Deluxe share the same cooking system and design. However, the Performer Deluxe is equipped with the Touch-N-Go gas-powered ignition system. Apart from black, the Deluxe is also available in copper and green finishes.

📌 Is the Weber Performer Deluxe available in a larger model?

Weber’s Performer Deluxe only comes in one size, which is the 22-inch model.

📌 How heavy does the Weber Performer Premium weigh?

When fully assembled, the Weber Performer Premium grill is about 100 pounds heavy.

📌 What is the Premium Grill Cover made of?

Weber’s Premium Grill Cover for the Performer grills is made of polyester. It’s water-resistant, comes with fastening straps, and only requires spot cleaning.

Last update on 2021-07-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Mari Bassig

Senior Editor, writer and researcher passionate about gadgets, social media, and music.