Weber Spirit vs. Genesis – What’s the Difference and Which should you buy?

Weber is one of the titans in the grilling industry, while they started out making high-quality charcoal kettle grills decades ago, they have since expanded to become one of the major players in the gas grill niche as well.

Two of Weber’s most popular gas grill are the Weber Spirit and the Weber Genesis.

You might be wondering Which is better Weber Genesis or spirit?

The Weber Genesis is certainly larger and a great option for outdoor chefs who need to feed a herd of people. Though the Weber Spirit is also infused with a lot of quality at a great value price and might be the better option if you need to grill for a small family of four.

To truly choose the best Weber gas grill for you, we are going to need to take a closer look at the nuts and bolts of what makes each of them special.

Weber Spirit vs. Genesis – What’s the Big Difference?

At a glance, you’ll find that the Weber Spirit line tends to be a little smaller and costs less.

Which makes it a great value for people who need to grill for small groups. They tend to be more affordable, though they have less special features. 

The Weber Spirit lineup also tends to not have as many natural gas compatible models, which could be an issue if you want to take the plunge into clean burning natural gas grilling.

The Weber Genesis line of gas grills tends to be a little larger and has models with a lot of extra bells and whistles.

It stands as Weber’s premium gas grill with more special features and a higher price tag to go along with it.

The Genesis lineup also features Weber’s GS4 grilling system. This is a bundle of special features that make the grill easier to use and clean.

While the Weber Genesis is a great high-end grill it still lingers in the shadow of the Weber Summit gas grill, which resides at the pinnacle of Weber’s gas grill lineup.

Key Differences Between The Weber Spirit and Weber Genesis Gas Grills

  • Weber Genesis line features GS4 Grilling System
  • Weber Spirit tends to be smaller and less expensive
  • Weber Genesis tends to cost more
  • Weber Spirit has less natural gas models
  • Weber Genesis has more iGrill 3 compatible models

The Weber Spirit II Grill Series

There are several models of the Weber Spirit to consider based on your needs, material preferences, and how many people you need to feed. The following is a quick look at each and the standout features that separate it from its siblings and competitors.

Weber Spirit E-210 

This is a two-burner propane burning gas grill with two stainless steel burner elements. It has Weber’s special Flavorizer bars which serve as heat tents that vaporize drippings. The grill grates are made from cast iron and coated in non-stick porcelain material for easy release and cleanup. This is a good gas grill for a single person or a small couple who occasionally enjoys a

Weber Spirit E-310 

The Weber Spirit E-310 is available in propane and natural gas burning models. It has three stainless steel burner elements that are rated to produce a whopping 32,000 BTUs per hour combined. The cast iron grill grates are coated with nonstick porcelain, though the small warming rack is chrome plated. Combined the provide 529 square inches, which makes the E-310 a good option for a family of four.

Weber Spirit S-315

The Weber Spirit S-315 shares a lot in common with the E-310, though it features a lot of stainless steel construction and has a closed cart base. This makes it handy for storing away a propane tank and grill tools. Though the S-315 is also available with natural gas elements as well. This is another great option to grill for a family of four.

Weber Spirit E-330 

The Weber Spirit takes yet another step up. It has a closed cart and is set up to burn on propane, and there’s more than enough space in the cabinet to hold a 20-pound liquid propane tank. Like the Weber E-310, it has 529 square inch cast iron grill grates that are coated in non-stick porcelain. This makes it a great option to grill for a family of four or more.

One area where the Weber Spirit E-330 separates itself from the rest of the pack is the flip-top side burner tastefully disguised in the left-hand side table. This lets you cook side dishes right at the grill side without the stress of having to run back and forth to the kitchen just to do something like boil corn or saute vegetables.

What We Liked About The Weber Spirit Line

  • Quality – There’s a lot of superior engineering and build quality infused into the Spirit lineup.
  • Porcelain Coated Grill Grates – In the past, Weber has stuck with chrome-plated grill grates for their look. Though porcelain-coated cast iron is better for heat retention and makes for easy cleanup.
  • Natural Gas Options – Many of the Spirit models are also available in natural gas, which is growing in popularity.
  • Warranty Protection – All the grills in the Weber Spirit lineup come with a 10-year warranty, which speaks to the overall build quality as well as maximizing your return on investment.

What We Didn’t Like About The Weber Spirit Line

  • Small Size – The Weber Spirit lineup has some smaller models that really are only suitable to grill for one or two people. Unless you are a dedicated life-long bachelor chances are will want to upgrade from a small model like the E-210 before the 10-year warranty runs out.
  • No iGrill 3 – Considering the premium price tag of at the top end of the Weber Spirit lineup, you would expect to see the iGrill 3 system components thrown in.
  • GS4 Isn’t Standard – The GS4 system is standard on all Genesis models but is only just being put into a few short-term trial models in the Spirit lineup.
The Verdict

The Weber Spirit stands head and shoulders above most of the competitor brands. It’s superior build quality and somewhat small size makes it a great option for singles, couples, and small families.

Though the larger models at the top of the line still have the size to let you have a bunch of friends over to watch the game or to host the next family reunion cookout.

The Weber Genesis II Grill Series

The Weber Genesis series tends to be larger on a model by model comparison. It also tends to have more bells and whistles. One of the things that distinguishes it from most of the Weber Spirit line is that the current series of the Genesis has Weber’s GS4 grilling system. This is a series of engineering cues and components that work in a synergy to make grilling and cleanup as easy as possible.

GS4 Grilling System

There are several key components of Weber’s GS4 grilling system. This includes things like:

  • Flavorizer Bars – These are porcelain-coated heat tents. They help to evenly distribute the heat across the grill grates, while also protecting the flame ports from grease and other drippings. When rendered grease does land on them the ambient heat vaporizes it to add to the smoky aroma and flavor.
  • Grease Management System – The lower portion of the firebox is engineered to divert any drippings that escape the Flavorizers to a large collection cup.
  • E2i Ignition System – This electric ignition system lets you control each gas burner element separately. You can then create dual heat zones or hybrid grill bone-in cuts of meat.

Weber Genesis E-310 

This is the entry-level model of the Weber Genesis lineup. It has 3 independently controlled burner elements and can produce a searing hot 39,000 BTUs of heat per hour. It’s available in propane and natural gas burner stainless steel elements. While it might be the baby of the line it still offers up to 669 square inches of grilling space across the porcelain-coated cast iron grill grates.

The base of the Weber Genesis E-310 features an open cart with a convenient storage shelf, as well as a special compartment for holding a liquid propane tank. It also has two wheels and two small locking casters which make it a good option to wheel across your deck or patio for convenient storage when not in use.

If there’s a complaint about the Weber Genesis E-310 it’s that it comes set up to work with Weber’s iGrill 3 wireless monitoring system, but the iGrill 3 components are sold separately. With such a high price tag, you sort of expect the iGrill 3 system to come with it. 

Weber Genesis E-315 

This is a small step up from the Weber Genesis E-310. It has all the same component features, including the 669 square inch porcelain-coated cast iron grill grates, and 39,000 BTU per hour stainless steel burner elements. It’s available in propane and natural gas models. It’s also iGrill 3 compatible, but not included in the purchase.

The main difference in the Weber Genesis E-315 is in the cart base. It has the same wheels and locking casters to move it across a deck or patio, as well as a compartment for a 20-pound liquid propane tank. Though it has dual cabinet doors for more discrete storage.

This lets you tuck away your grill tools and accessories without having them on display for all the world to see. Though the cabinet itself is not completely waterproof. So, if you are going to keep things like wood chips or electronic components in the cabinet, make sure to secure them in a sealable plastic tote.

Weber Genesis SE- 310 

The Weber Genesis SE-310 shares a lot with the E-310, though this is designed to be a natural gas burning gas grill. To that point, it comes with a 10-foot long natural gas hose, rather than a compartment for a liquid propane tank. It has the same open cart design with wheels and locking casters.

The grill grates measure in at 513 square inches. The Weber Genesis SE-310 also differentiates itself from the E-310 wit a motion sensor handle light, which is handy if you want to use it as part of outdoor kitchen setup, and you sometimes grill after dark.

Weber Genesis E-330 & SE 330 

This is the next big step up in the Weber Genesis lineup. It’s larger in overall size and the enameled lid is available in various colors, which does make it a little more stylish. The open cart base has a convenient compartment to hold a 20-pound liquid propane tank. There’s also a convenient wire basket as well as a sturdy lower shelf to secure the legs together. This grill is also available in a natural gas model.

Inside the firebox, you’ll find 3 stainless steel burner elements that distribute the heat evenly across the 513 square inches, porcelain-coated, cast iron grill grates. There’s also a convenient “Tuck Away” warming rack. The E-330 also has a flip-top side burner for preparing side dishes. It also comes with lights built into the handle for times when you might need to grill after the sun goes down.

The SE 330 has all the same features as the E330. Though it uses more stainless steel in the overall construction and has an enclosed cabinet base. It’s also available in natural gas.

Weber Genesis E-410 - Enameled lid and grates, with four burners

This is the larger 4-burner version of the Weber Genesis. It’s available with natural gas or liquid propane stainless steel burner elements. Here again, the cast iron grill grates are coated with heavy-duty nonstick porcelain. The four burners are independently controlled, which makes it easy to create two completely different heat zones. With a deft hand, you might be able to create three gradient heat zones which would be handy for times when you need to grill for a large group of people.

There are two arguable complaints to be made with the Weber Genesis E-410. Yet again, you’re fielding a very high price tag and while the grill is compatible with the iGrill 3 system, it doesn’t come with it. You could also complain that with a grill this large, with two big side tables, that Weber could have easily put a side burner in as a statement of premium engineering quality for the price.

Weber Genesis E-435 & S-435  

The Weber Genesis E-435 and the S435 reside at the peak of the Genesis lineup. The S-435 distinguishes itself as being the stainless steel version, whereas the E-435 is the black enameled version.

Both are available with natural gas or propane burner elements, and each has four independently controlled burners in the firebox.

They also have a built-in, flip-top side burner to let you prepare side dishes at the grill side. All five elements are rated to produce a whopping 69,000 BTUs of heat per hour.

The Weber Genesis E-435 and S-435 both offer 844 square inches of grill space. The primary grates are made from premium cast iron and coated with nonstick porcelain.

The tuck-away warming rack is also large enough to handle a sizeable load of meat, which is nice if you are grilling for a large group.

Once again, for a top of the line model, the Weber Genesis E-435 and S-435 are compatible with the iGrill 3 system, but neither model comes with it in the standard package.

Another odd flaw with these 400-level gas grills is that they don’t have a compatible rotisserie for them in the Weber lineup.

Whereas there are rotisserie kits available for Weber’s 200 and 300-level grills in both the Spirit and Genesis lineups.

What We Liked About The Weber Genesis Line

  • Overall Build Quality Weber made sure to use the best materials and sound engineering throughout all the Genesis models.
  • Porcelain Coated Grill Grates Weber used to be a stickler about inferior chrome-plated grill grates, so it was nice to see them step up with porcelain coated grill grates in their premium gas grill lineup.
  • GS4 Grilling System It comes as standard throughout the Weber Genesis line, which is a nice touch and one that you’d hope the Spirit line will include in the future.
  • Warranty Protection – With 10-years of warranty protection, you know that you’re getting a great grill that was meant to last.

What We Didn’t Like About The Weber Genesis Line

  • No iGrill 3 – The entire lineup is compatible with the iGrill 3 wireless system, and you would expect that to come as standard in the high-end models of the Weber Genesis lineup.
  • The Price Tag – All the models of the Weber Genesis line will put a pretty serious hurt on your checking account.
  • No Rotisserie For 400 Models – The 200 and 300 models of both the Weber Spirit and Weber Genesis can accommodate accessory rotisseries, but for some reason, they didn’t engineer the 400 models for rotisserie use.

The Verdict

The Weber Genesis line of gas grills truly is impressive. Though some of the smaller models are on par with price and build quality with some of the larger models in the Spirit line up which leave a little bit of gray area when it comes to price.

In a scenario like this, it’s only the GS4 system that edges the smaller Weber Genesis models over the larger Weber Spirit models.

So, if you’re going to “Go Big” with the Genesis, then it’s best to go with the larger decked out models like the Weber Genesis 330 and the SE 330.

The Weber Summit Gas Grill Lineup

At the peak of the Weber Gas grill lineup is dominated by the high-quality, high-priced Weber Summit series. This lineup is infused with special features to go right along with Weber’s telltale material build quality and impressive warranty coverage. Though you should note that this is different from the Weber Summit charcoal grill series.

Weber Summit E-470

This could be considered the entry level model for this premium gas grill line. The Weber Summit E-470 is available in both natural gas and liquid propane burning models. It has four independently controlled stainless steel burner elements, as well as a flip top side burner. All told it means the Weber Summit E-470 can produce a staggering 48,800 BTUs of heat per hour.

One of the things that I love about the Weber Summit E-470 is that a tuck away rotisserie system comes built-in. You can deploy it in minutes to enjoy a high-end rotisserie experience. Then when you’re done cooking the rotisserie tastefully tucks away and you can enjoy your meal.

Here again, you see Weber’s high-end material build quality and engineering on display. They affirm this statement by backing the Weber Summit E-470 with a comprehensive 10-year warranty.

What We Liked About The Weber Summit E-470

  • Build Quality – This is Weber answering to their reputation with a stainless steel version of the Weber Summit.
  • Warranty Protection – With a 10-year comprehensive warranty the Weber Summit is sure to pay for itself over and over again!
  • Tuck Away Rotisserie – The rotisserie components and motor come built in. You can discretely leave them out of the equation when you aren’t using it, yet deploy the rotisserie in a matter or minutes.
  • Flip Top Side Burner – Tucked away discretely, it lets you saute vegetables and prepare side dishes right at the grill side, without having to run back and forth to the kitchen.

What We Didn’t Like About The Weber Summit E-470

  • Grill Grate Change – Some iterations of the Weber Summit E-470 have sticky stainless steel grates instead of porcelain coated cast iron.
  • High Price Tag – You are getting a lot of grill for the money, but the price tag is a little high for what is the entry level of this line.

The Verdict

If you have the budget for it, the Weber Summit E-470 has the material build quality and the warranty protection to give you a massive return on your investment in the long-term.

Just try to look for a model that has the porcelain coated grill grates rather than the stainless steel. If you can only find a model with stainless steel, then make sure to scrape it down with a nylon grill brush to keep from scuffing the inherently slick metal surface of the grates.

Weber Summit E-670

This is a titan of a gas grill available in stainless steel or porcelain coated. You can get it with natural gas or propane burner elements. There are also component options for those who are interested in installing the Weber Summit E-670 as part of an outdoor kitchen.

The Weber Summit E-670 has six independently controlled gas burner elements spread out across it’s expansive 624 square inch primary grill grates. Cranked up to high it produces an impressive 60,000 BTUs of consistent heat per hour. There’s also a side burner for prepare side dishes and the same type of convenient tuck away rotisserie system that you  see on the Weber E470.

Here again the Weber Summit E-670 comes with Weber’s mandatory build quality, backed by a robust 10-year warranty. While the Summit E-670 is a serious investment, you can sink your money into it with the confidence that it will pay for itself in many long years of service.

What We Liked About The Weber Summit E-670

Material Build Quality – Weber continues to infuse their best into this highest-end of their gas grill lineup.

Warranty Coverage – With a 10-year comprehensive warranty the Weber Summit E-670 is sure to give you a strong return on your investment.

Tuck Away Rotisserie System – The rotisserie components and motor come built in. You can deploy it in a matter of minutes, yet it isn’t in your way when you aren’t using it. 

Flip Top Side Burner – It allows you to  you to prepare side dishes right at the grill side, without having to go back to the kitchen.

The Six Burners – Each with it’s own independent controls you can theoretically create three different heat zones.

What We Didn’t Like About The Weber Summit E-670

Grill Grate Change – Here again, there are some iterations of the Weber Summit E-470 have sticky stainless steel grates instead of cast iron with a nonstick porcelain coating. 

High Price Tag – This is another time where you are paying a little bit more for the Weber badge on the grill, but it’s got the material quality to be worthy of your investment.

The Verdict

If you think of gas grilling with a “Go Big” mentality, then the Weber Summit E-670 is the grill for you! It has the material build quality and warranty coverage to be worthy of the investment. I also really like that the rotisserie system and side burner come wrapped in the package as standard.

Weber Spirit Vs Genesis Frequently Asked Questions

Should I Choose Natural Gas Or Propane Grill?

It's important to note that many of the Weber Genesis and the Weber Spirit models are available to burn either liquid propane or new clean-burning natural gas.

Though natural gas only has roughly a third of the energy density, which means it isn’t available to consumers in a tank, like liquid propane. 

So you’ll need to make sure that you have a municipal natural gas line. You can’t safely burn natural gas on a propane grill and vice versa.

Is Natural Gas Or Propane Better For A Weber Gas Grill?

With a propane grill, you can connect to a municipal propane line or use a liquid propane tank. The tank is handy if you have a small deck or patio and you need to move the grill around for convenient storage when not in use.

One of the knocks on propane is that at low temperatures it doesn’t burn as efficiently and can impart an artificial flavor to the food.

Though Weber has done their best to engineer both the Spirit and Genesis lines for maximum efficiency compared to some competitor brands.

Natural gas burns much cleaner, so you don’t get the flavor complaint. It also costs less on a per-unit basis.

Though you do need to have a municipal gas line running to your outdoor cooking space. 

Both the Spirit and Genesis lines come with 10-foot gas hoses standard in their natural gas models.

Which Is Better Stainless Steel Or Black Enamel For A Weber Grill?

Weber made their name selling iconic charcoal kettle grills with an enamel black finish. While they carry this through with both the Spirit and Genesis line of gas grills, they do also offer stainless steel models peppered throughout their line.

They made it a point to use commercial grade stainless steel, which has superior corrosion resistance.

Though you should still give it a thorough cleaning every season with a quality stainless steel cleaner to maintain the gleam, or it could tarnish.

Is A Side Burner Important?

Both the Weber Spirit and Weber Genesis have models with a side burner. Though I think you’ll find that it’s only really worth the money if you like to boil side dishes like mashed potatoes and corn.

If you need to saute vegetables or fry bacon at the grill side, you could simply use a cast iron griddle or a grill frying pan. Both Weber gas grills put out enough heat to fry on the grill grates.

Is The iGrill 3 System Worth The Money?

Many of the Spirit and Genesis models are iGrill 3 compatible. This is a relatively new system offered by Weber to let you wirelessly monitor the food being cooked via a smartphone app.

Not only is it technologically savvy, but it also spares you from having to open the grill lid to check the meat, which instantly changes the heat.

Honestly, though, you’re probably not going to use the iGrill 3 for burgers, steaks, and bratwursts. It’s only really valuable if you like to grill a lot of bone-in cuts of meat like a leg of lamb, turkey drum sticks, or split whole chickens.

Weber Spirit Vs Genesis Which Should You Buy?

Both Weber Spirit and Weber Genesis lines offer superior material quality, engineering, and warranty coverage compared to the competitor brands.

These really are some of the best gas grills on the planet. Though they do come with a somewhat high price tag.

The quick answer to which is best, is the Weber Spirit E-310. It’s big enough to cook for a family, yet small enough to not crowd your deck. It also has a friendlier price tag than the Weber Genesis of the same relative size. Though it’s certainly not the only Weber gas grill deserving of your consideration.

If you just need to grill for yourself and perhaps a significant other from time to time you might be drawn to the Weber Spirit E-210, though I think you’ll find yourself thinking about an upgrade in a few years if you have children or your social circle expands.

So, if you just need to grill for a small number of people, then the Weber Spirit E-310 is probably the best Weber gas grill.

If you like to host cookouts and family reunions, then you’re probably looking for something larger.

The Weber Genesis E-410, E-435, and S-435 are probably the best Weber gas grills to cook for a large group. Just bear in mind that they currently don’t have a compatible rotisserie. 

If you want a rotisserie, gas grill, then the Weber Genesis E-330 and SE-330 should be your top contenders.

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