As the agent permeates the material, rather than just coating it, the effects should be long-lasting.

Apart from helping to keep the inside of the machine - and the clothes washed in it - free from musty smells, the advantage is that users can make use of lower temperature programmes and know that their clothes are still coming out clean and sanitised.

There’s also a self-cleaning programme that spray cleans the machine at the end of each wash cycle.

Other features include the direct motion motors which are guaranteed for life. Without the need for a belt, they vibrate less, are quieter (72dBA while spinning, 53dBA while washing and 59dBA while drying), more durable and energy efficient.      

The drum has pillow-shaped pads to protect clothes and an interior light to make sure that you never leave a sock behind.

Pillow drum

In terms of what the machines do, there’s a new programme to refresh the sort of very delicate fabrics that you’d ordinarily have to take to the dry cleaners; a steam cleaning function that sanitises clothes and prevents wrinkling; and an auto-weight programme that calculates the wash duration and water required for an optimum clean, according to the weight of the laundry. There's also a starting time delay of up to 24 hours. 

The machines come in three sizes: 8kg, 10kg and 12kg (for washing, and up to 8kg for drying) and have an A energy rating. They have a 1,400rpm spin speed and dimensions of 850 x 595 x 600mm. The 8kg and 10kg machines come in white or graphite (pictured below). The 12kg is available in white only.

Series 7 in charcoal

The line includes washing machines, washer dryers and tumble dryers. Prices start from £679 for the 8kg, £699 for the 10kg and £899 for the 12kg machine. We'll update with buying information as soon as they're available. Until then, you may want to check out our article on how to maintain your washing machine.