Pros / Ample cooking area along with superior heat production and distribution.
Cons / The warranty on parts is short.
Verdict / For a grill costing less than $200, the Char-Broil Performance is impressive. This grill delivers on enough levels to make it our best value pick.
In our evaluation of the best gas grills, we focused on models that cost less than $500. After testing more than a dozen grills, we determined that the Char-Broil Performance delivers the most value for your dollar. It’s relatively simple to put together, has a spacious grilling area and distributes consistent heat better than most other grills.
When you open this grill, you see four stainless steel burners covered by porcelain-coated cast iron grates. The main burners produce 36,000 Btu of heat that is distributed evenly across the cooking surface. To test heat consistency, we measured the cooking temperature of this grill at periodic intervals to see how well it remained at a steady temperature. We also measured how long it took the heat to return to its previous temperature after the lid had been open for one minute. After comparing that data to the rest of the grills we tested, we realized only our top choice, the Weber Spirit II, maintained heating temperature better and returned to temperature faster than the Char-Broil Performance.
Our overall grilling experience was good, but other than heat consistency, nothing really stood out about this grill when lined up side-by-side with the rest. But nothing went terribly wrong either – we didn’t note any flareups, oddities or awkwardness in design, function or any other reason not to buy it. In other words, the grill didn’t get in the way of the cooking.
The Performance has a 475-square-inch cooking area that you can comfortably fit 12 frozen burger patties on. This wasn’t the largest grilling area we saw; the Dyna-Glo and Nexgrill models we tested had 507 and 638 square-inch cooking spaces, respectively.
The grill comes with a 10,000 Btu side burner, which is convenient for more comprehensive grilling occasions where you’re cooking more than just meat. This might seem like a small thing, but most of the affordable grills we reviewed did not have a side burner at all.
It does lose points in the construction department. While we were able to put this grill together more easily than others, the parts and materials all seemed a bit cheap. That made this model feel less stable and durable than grills such as our top pick, the Weber Spirit II.
That can largely be explained by the difference in price. We named this our best value pick because at the time of this writing, this grill could be purchased for less than $200, and our top choice was more than $400. Given its other great features, it’s a screaming deal, but when you make that tradeoff, you can expect to get lower quality materials as well as reduced durability and life span.
The burners are protected for five years. This is typical among the grills we selected for this evaluation. Some grills only have a one or three-year warranty covering burners. What gives us pause about the warranty is everything else is only covered for a single year. From our experience warranty length is a good indicator of longevity. Contrast this warranty with the one for our top choice, which covers both the parts and burner for 10 years.
For a grill under $200, this is a hard model to beat. We were able to assemble this grill easier than most, and it’s simply functional and effective. We experienced great heat consistency and no notable problems while cooking. There’s not much bad to say about the experience you get with this grill. But as with all inexpensive products, don’t be surprised if you have to replace it sooner than you expected.
If you want a grill that can get hot and stay hot, the Char-Broil Performance may be the right gas grill for you. It has three stainless steel main burners that combine to generate approximately 30,000 BTU, and the stainless steel cooking grate will retain heat to provide proper searing capabilities when you cook steaks, chicken, hamburgers and more. This well-designed and unique grill is sure to please any grill master.