Gtech AirRAM Platinum review: probably the best upright cordless vac ever

The new Gtech AirRam Platinum is not only shiny; it makes light work of vacuuming duties

T3 Platinum Award
Gtech AirRAM Platinum at home on the range
(Image credit: Derek Adams)
T3 Verdict

If you’re in the market for a dynamite cordless vac that can stand up on its own, the Gtech AirRam Platinum is the most convenient model this writer’s ever used. No it doesn’t come with any hand tools, but from a pick-up-and-play point of view, this little white wonder has very few peers.

Reasons to buy
  • +

    Unswerving convenience

  • +

    Excellent performance on all floor surfaces

  • +

    Amazing bin-emptying system

  • +

    Load running time

  • +

    LED headlights

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    It doesn’t come with any hand-vac tools

  • -

    It won’t clean right to the very edge

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In this new upgraded Gtech AirRam Platinum review, you’ll be seeing a lot of joy. This upright cordless vacuum cleaner is the best I’ve ever tried. I was already a big fan of Gtech, and this cordless vac is next level. 

Gtech is a UK company that specialises in battery-powered appliances, including garden tools, power tools and floorcare products, and most of what they produce is excellent. Forget Lord Dyson; in my opinion Nick Grey – Gtech’s founder and chief designer – is the Steve Jobs of small domestic appliances.

I’ve already owned every incarnation of Gtech’s AirRAM series and it's always been one of the best cordless vacuum cleaners, precisely because it's so different to the cordless norm, which is to try to ape specifically the best Dyson cordless vacs. So I was super keen to get this new Platinum edition on the floor to give it a good innings. And now, readers, here’s my report…

Gtech AirRAM Platinum: price and availability

The Gtech AirRam Platinum retails at £349 and is currently available in the UK direct from Gtech. You can be sure the Platinum edition will soon follow its stablemates, the AirRAM Mk2 and AirRAM Mk2 K9, into other stores like Argos, Amazon and Currys. To save on your order, take a look at our Gtech discount codes page.

The same goes for those in the USA where you can buy the existing AirRAM K2 for $317 from Amazon. In Australia, the AirRAM Mk2 is sold under the Bissell brand where you can buy the Mk2 from Global Shop Direct for A$449.

Gtech AirRAM Platinum review: design & features

Gtech AirRAM Platinum box

The Gtech AirRAM Platinum arrives in the smallest box of any cordless vac. The glass is shown for scale.

(Image credit: Gtech)

Sometimes the best things come in small packages, and the box this handsome cordless vac came in would fit a pair of wellies. It’s that small. Assembly was as simple as simple can be – I just joined a few shafts together and the vac was ready to roll. At no time did I resort to any manual referencing because everything about this vac is so self evident.

Gtech AirRAM Platinum on white background

The Gtech AirRAM Platinum is brilliant in every way

(Image credit: Gtech)

The Gtech AirRAM Platinum differs from most cordless vac in a number of ways. Firstly, it’s an upright vac instead of a stick like most of its competitors. This means it doesn’t come with any hand tools like nozzles, sofa brushes, etc. Actually I lied because this particular model ships with a clip-on hand duster for shelves, etc. But it’s not a proper tool because it doesn’t attach to anything – it’s just a bog-standard duster but a decent one nonetheless.

I have a good argument for using a vac like this instead of a stick model. Firstly, the AirRAM stands up on its own which means you can wheel it around the house and straight to its storage area where it will stay upright ready for its next task. The main shaft even telescopes down by half its height so it can be stored in a cupboard just 86cm in height.

I have tested a ton of cordless stick vacs – and still have a few knocking about the home – but my older AirRAM K9 is still the one we reach for first because the whole process of using it is so unbelievably effortless. With a stick vac I have to lift a jumble of pieces off the floor – or off its wall mounted stand – and carry it awkwardly to the area that needs sweeping. With the AirRAM I simply lift it up by its front-mounted carry handle, tilt it back and push it to its work place. It’s far and away the best option for those quick whizzes around the home before someone comes to visit. I also love its LED headlights that illuminate the path in the darkest recesses of the home.

Gtech AirRAM Platinum on white background

(Image credit: Gtech)

In many ways, the Gtech AirRam most resembles one of those push-along sweepers your grandma used to use, except this one has a brushless motor to power the brush head and powerful vacuum to suck in the muck. Moreover, unlike fancy cordless vacs that use cyclone technology and other complex ways to port the detritus from the floor to the bin, this model’s channel from brush head to bin is just 2cm, meaning less battery power is required to force rubbish into the dust collector.

According to the blurb, the new AirRAM Platinum ‘now features Anti Hair Wrap Technology and innovative Forward Inertia Drive, whilst delivering up to one hour of runtime’. Well so far I’ve seen no evidence of hair entangling the roller and I can definitely feel the Inertia Drive pulling the vac forward, but more on that in the next chapter.

Gtech AirRAM Platinum review: vacuum performance

Gtech AirRAM Platinum on white background

(Image credit: Gtech)

The AirRAM Platinum’s floor sweeping performance is really impressive. Like my existing K9 model, this model collects stuff I never knew existed. In fact I’ve often used it as a benchmark when testing other vacs. After testing a specific vac on a section of flooring, I will take out the K9 and go over the same section, and every time the Gtech’s transparent bin shows evidence of dust and hair the test vac somehow missed. 

I have two dogs and three cats and you won’t believe the amount of loose hair these creatures produce in just one day. Consequently, I’m gobsmacked every time I use the AirRAM because it collects more hair in any one session than my trusty Dyson V11. Yes, the V11 comes with a load of hand tools and can suck stuff off shelves, what have you, but using the V11 on a regular basis is often more trouble than it’s worth, partly because it feels so heavy in the hand.

Simplicity is another winning bonus with this vac because there are absolutely no extra mode buttons like ‘boost’ and ‘eco’. You get just one power band which is more than enough for everything I need it to do.

Gtech AirRAM Platinum at home on the floor

Rug tassels are no problem for this little titan

(Image credit: Derek Adams)

One major advantage of the new Platinum edition over previous incarnations is that it doesn’t jam up when I approach a rug with tassels. My earlier K9 model literally stops dead, a red light comes on and I have to wait 20 seconds for the motor to reset. This one just keeps on turning. Sure, it will snatch tassels momentarily if you let it ride slipshod over them but then every brush roller-equipped cordless vac I’ve ever used has done that.

I tried it on a variety of flooring and it excelled in all disciplines. I even introduced it to the deepest pile known to mankind, a surface that flummoxes the Dyson V11 unless in eco mode and with the suction reduction vent open. Against all expectations the AirRAM’s bristled brush kept turning and swept up everything I’d thrown in its path. Yes, its Inertia Drive wasn’t very effective on this depth of carpet and it was more difficult to pull back, but it left a very neat, clean finish in its wake.

Granted, The AirRAM Platinum isn’t as easy to steer as a stick vac – the main shaft can’t swivel left and right– but because all the weight is on the floor it’s much more effortless to use on a daily basis. Also, its shallow profile allows it to reach deep under beds and sofas.

The Gtech AirRam Platinum comes with a washable filter – plus a spare one – and a handful of scent tubes that push into the filter housing. The scent tube emits a pleasant smell, masking that horrible ‘just vacuumed' niff that most vacuum cleaners seem to produce.

If there are any negatives, its this vac’s inability to sweep clean the few centimetres of space along skirting boards and the corners of a room. I don’t have a problem with that because I just use the nozzle on the Dyson. Thankfully Gtech sometimes discounts its handheld Multi MK2 cordless vac when purchasing an AirRAM so I would advise getting one of those for the finishing touches.

Gtech AirRAM Platinum review: dustbin

Gtech AirRAM Platinum review

Simply pull out the bin, open the hatch and slide the slider across to eject the works

(Image credit: Gtech)

Aah, the dustbin – my favourite part of all. Gtech has absolutely nailed its bin design. Its bin capacity is 0.8-litres which is actually a bit bigger than most of the competition. However, using sight alone, the bin on this model looks smaller than 0.8 litres and I think this is because, as the moniker suggests, the system somehow rams – or compresses – all dust, hair and other detritus into a tightly packed mass. After just five minutes of use, the bin is usually full to the brim but thankfully the act of emptying it is a stroke of genius.

Instead of faffing about with large bin door openings and using your fingers to extricate trapped hair around the cyclone cylinder or whatever it is stick vacs have in there, with this model you simply remove the bin, undo the door latch and slide a lever downwards so everything – and I mean everything – is ejected into the bin. There is no better bin-emptying system on any vac anywhere in my opinion.

Gtech AirRAM Platinum review: battery performance

Gtech AirRAM Platinum review

The AirRAM's battery (on the right) unclips for easy charging

(Image credit: Gtech)

Here’s another area where this cordless vac excels. It takes less than three hours to charge its 22v Lithium-ion battery – not the fastest it must be said – but a single charge will give you up to an hour of vacuuming. Thankfully the battery can be removed from the main housing for charging. And that means you can also buy an extra one as backup.

Truth is I haven’t done enough cleaning to fully check the running time on the Platinum model but on evidence of its predecessor, the K9, the Platinum should compete very favourably with most of the competition.

Gtech AirRAM Platinum review: what’s the point of a cordless vac without any tools?

Good question. The beauty of most cordless stick vacs is that they can be easily used with a raft of different hand tools. These are handy for cleaning shelves, the car, along skirting boards and the corners of rooms. Aside from the aforementioned hand duster, the only tool this model ships with is a short handle that fits to the main body so you can use it as a handheld of sorts for doing stairs and perhaps a sofa or two. It’s handy but it’s not something I’ll ever use because I have the Dyson V11 for that kind of thing.

Gtech AirRAM Platinum review: verdict

Gtech AirRAM Platinum on white background

(Image credit: Gtech)

As long as you don’t mind foregoing a set of hand tools, the Gtech AirRam Platinum will do everything you ask of it, from hard floors to deep pile carpet. It will positively devour pet hair on an industrial scale and its bin is so easy to empty I’m surprised other manufacturers haven’t cottoned on. It’s more expensive than a Shark but less than a Dyson, but I think it’s more convenient than either, especially when used on a daily basis. Top marks in my book.

Derek Adams

Derek (aka Delbert, Delvis, Delphinium, Delboy etc) specialises in home and outdoor wares, from coffee machines, white appliances and vacs to drones, garden gear and BBQs. He has been writing for more years than anyone can remember, starting at the legendary Time Out magazine – the original, London version – on a typewriter! He now writes for T3 between playing drums with his bandmates in Red Box (redboxmusic).