Worx Landroid review: An end to mowing the lawn?

The plucky robotic will take some of the chore out of maintaining lawns.

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Worx Landroid
  • Worx Landroid
  • Worx Landroid
  • Worx Landroid
  • Expert Rating

    3.75 / 5

Pros

  • Convenient
  • Uses cut grass as compost
  • Safe and almost silent
  • Quick charging

Cons

  • Hedges still require a whipper-snipper
  • Pricey at $1199

Would you buy this?

The good folks at Worx want to put an end to the chore of mowing lawns with the release of an autonomous mower called the Worx Landroid. It uses a sensory system not unlike those found in robotic vacuum cleaners, although implanting the same tech into a lawn mower is far more ambitious. The result is a niche mowing product suited to idyllic garden patches or expansive and simplistic lawns.

Pitfalls face the development of a robotic lawn mower. Rush the design and it could trample garden patches or injure pets and children. Unlike an autonomous vacuum cleaner, the Worx Landroid cannot have free reign to go wherever because it carries blades on its underside.

Making sure the Landroid cuts grass only requires the one time setup of a wired perimeter. The Landroid ships with a 180-metre roll of green copper wiring and pegs. Hammer the pegs to keep the green wiring as close to the ground as possible around the border of your lawn. Both ends of the wire connect to the Landroid’s base, which feeds a current to create a low-voltage circuit.

Overgrowth will bury the wire so that it can’t be seen. Good Gear Guide tested a Landroid over two weeks and we found that was enough time for overgrowth to conceal the perimeter.

The Landroid before it has had a chance to cut terribly unkempt grass
The Landroid before it has had a chance to cut terribly unkempt grass

How well the Landroid works depends entirely on the perimeter. Rush the setup and you’ll have uncut patches near the outskirts. Fail to nail the wiring deep enough and the blades of the Landroid will have it snipped. Invest time in getting the perimeter right and you could end up with a pristine lawn.

The Landroid looks like a 4WD version of a vacuum cleaner. Large rear wheels help it traverse lawns characterised by inclines 20 degrees steep. Rotating front wheels swivel the electric mower when it comes to a dead end. A sophisticated sensory system guides the little-mower-that-could across lawns in completely random directions. Worx describes the Landroid best on its website: “All robots are stupid, but Worx Landroid is less stupid than others.”

The Worx ships with a spare blade
The Worx ships with a spare blade

Three ordinary blades line the bottom of the electric mower. The simplistic blades will cut grass first time most times, while it will return to uncut patches eventually to get the job done. The blades don’t protrude beyond the body and, if you try to pick up the 8.5kg mower, it automatically stops.

Grass can be cut to heights of 60mm and to lows of 20mm by way of a knob located at the top of the Landroid. Neglected lawns should start off at 60mm and then go for a secondary run at 20mm as it’s easier on the bot. The Landroid will cut grass in paths 18cm wide at a time, and it has no qualms with cutting grass bordered by a footpath. Simply make sure the wire is nailed as close to the edge as possible.

The Landroid on its charging base
The Landroid on its charging base

Hedges are another matter. The Landroid lacks the dexterity to cut grass bordered by a fence or structure. Similar to any lawn mower, a whipper-snipper will be needed to tidy up the edges. Although we recommend nailing the boundary as close to pavements as possible, it is best to lay it roughly 30 cm away from fences.

Come rain and the Landroid will return to its base, where it cleans itself and charges a 28 Volt Li-on battery from flat to full in 90 minutes. The base is a tricky variable because it needs to be tethered to a power supply. The Landroid is weatherproof, though Worx does not recommend it is kept out during rain season. If the base isn’t stationed undercover, then undo the wiring contacts and pack the Landroid under the protection of shelter — a task that takes no longer than 5 minutes.

Grass can be kept short and fresh with the Landroid, but it’s no all in one solution. This is a mower intended for simplistic lawns and mid-sized back yards. It’s not the quickest — nor the best — mower on the market. Those who value quality over convenience will have to do the hard yakka themselves. Everyone else can let the Landroid take care of it for a cool $1200.

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