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Hands-on review: Dyson V11 is the smartest stick vac on the block
Tue, 27th Aug 2019
FYI, this story is more than a year old

Dyson has launched its latest cordless vacuum cleaner, the Dyson V11.

It comes in three variants, with the Dyson V11 Torque Drive starting at a blistering $1,199, followed by the V11 Absolute at $1,299 and the V11 Absolute Pro at $1,349 

It's also their most expensive vacuum cleaner to-date.

Is it worth it? We gave it a spin to find out.

What we liked

There's a reason the V11 comes with such a hefty price tag: it packs a punch with the innovation it contains.

Without a doubt, it's a vacuum cleaner that displays the efficiency and precision of cleaning only seen in advertisements, and never actually played out in real-life use cases.

Its flagship feature is the Dynamic Load Sensor, which intelligently controls the motor position 360 times a second, changing the resistance and motor speed of the vacuum cleaner between surfaces.

What this means is that if you just want a cordless vacuum cleaner that does it's very best cleaning right out of the box (ie me), this feature will let you get vacuuming with the appropriate mode/ settings to suit the surfaces and the materials you need to clean.

The V11 comes with a plethora of accessories and different heads to clean different surfaces including heads for crevices, rugs, and smaller surfaces like stairs.

This gives the V11 unparalleled flexibility as an all-purpose dirt and dust suction tool.

It was able to deep-clean carpets and pick up hairballs that usually gave my current vacuum trouble after tangling up and obstructing the suction opening.

Switching out the stick and attaching the accessories directly to the motor gave me a powerful handheld cleaning machine, which I put to the test cleaning my car to see how it tackled uneven surfaces, embedded dirt, and how effective the suction would be with the crevice tool.

The V11 performed remarkably, and I was especially impressed by how the crevice tool handled all the sand that had gotten into the tight spaces in between the seats.

I also loved the way the dust barrel has a point-and-release design, allowing me to dispose of the dust and dirt that had been picked up without having to touch the interior of the barrel.

The V11 also features an LCD screen that shows you exactly how much time you have remaining in the mode you're currently using, which prevents “battery rundown anxiety”.

The LCD screen also features handy video alerts that show you how to maintain your prized vacuum cleaner.

We recently came across an incredibly in-depth Dyson V11 review here.

They include a number of cleaning tests on hardwood and two types of carpet. Their test helped confirm many of the features and performance aspects we like about the V11. It's worth taking a look at if you want to see how the V11 performs against specific floor and debris types.

What we didn't like

The Dyson V11 is heavier compared to its predecessors, courtesy of a bigger battery pack that gives it a longer battery life – but that also means that you start feeling that one-armed workout after about half an hour of vacuuming.

Another thing about the V11's design is the button that powers the machine needs to be held down constantly, right on the inside of the handle.

The great thing about this design is that any time spent redirecting your vacuum won't eat up your precious battery life – but that also meant that at some point, you might start feeling cramping in your forearm.

Also, with the myriad accessories the Dyson V11 comes with, I can't help but think they could have also provided some style of storage system that would have helped you keep them all in one place.

There is a clip that allows you to attach two accessories to the wand as you vacuum, but that doesn't solve the problem of how to store and organise all the other accessories you're not clipping to the wand.


As a person who really isn't a fan of cleaning and leaves the vacuuming to the moment when it absolutely can no longer be put off, the Dyson V11 is a machine that changed how I feel about vacuuming.

It made the process quicker, more efficient, and easier.

Having the instant gratification of seeing a dirty surface get cleaned in one pass and the time saved in not having to unplug the vacuum from one socket to another one in another section of my apartment went a long way towards how I felt about the process.

The caveat here, though, is that the V11 is still one very pricy vacuum cleaner.

If you have over $1,000 to invest in a cleaning tool and fast, efficient cleaning matter enough to you, I would definitely recommend the purchase.

Otherwise, it may be worth looking at a slightly older model of the Dyson stick vacuum cleaners.