Whirlpool Says Stainless Is Out, Sunset Bronze Is In

Is the sun finally setting on stainless?

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Is the age of stainless steel finally coming to an end? Now that 2015 is officially here, Whirlpool Corporation thinks it's time for a new color scheme to take over kitchen appliances, replacing the silver stainless steel motif that's reigned for 15 years.

Introducing "Sunset Bronze," a warm, golden hue that's designed to provide a distinctive look while still matching new and existing kitchen designs and cabinetry.

Whirlpool Sunset Bronze Suite
Credit: Kyle Looney
We got hands on time with Whirlpool's Sunset Bronze kitchen suite at CES 2015. View Larger
Whirlpool Sunset Bronze Dishwasher
Credit: Kyle Looney
The dishwasher controls are kept under the counter, leaving the smooth finish unbroken. View Larger

Sunset Bronze is actually a painted version of traditional stainless steel, achieved by color blocking silver stainless steel. The color block technique should also retain the fine grain and texture associated with true stainless.

Whirlpool says the complex new formulation can withstand both the cold of a refrigerator and the heat of any range, and it's also smudge- and fingerprint-resistant.

Whirlpool will make the new color available across an entire lineup of kitchen appliances, known collectively as the Sunset Bronze Kitchen Suite.

It's the next volley in the appliance industry's attempt to dethrone stainless as the king of the kitchen—or at least give consumers other options. It all started when Whirlpool introduced White Ice and Black Ice back in 2012. Next, GE unveiled its Slate finish and retro-inspired Artistry kitchen suite.

Whirlpool Sunset Bronze Suite 1
Credit: Kyle Looney
Bathe your kitchen in a golden glow. View Larger

At the high end, Miele offers Brilliant White and Truffle Brown on its latest appliances, and LG is bringing a glass-front fridge to CES this year.

None of these finishes are expected to replace stainless right away—but they're giving customers new options for how their kitchens can look. Slate, for example, has been particularly popular among consumers who are replacing bisque and almond-finish appliances.

Whirlpool's new suite will be on display at Whirlpool's booth at the 2015 International CES, and consumers will be able to find Sunset Bronze in showrooms as early as fall of 2015.

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Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.