Napoleon started building gas grills in 1995 after 15 years of making stoves and fireplace inserts. They know heat and produce some of the best gas grills in their price range, which is broad and packed with products. Often overlooked, Napoleon Grills may be on the verge of dominating the gas grill market. The Napoleon Prestige Pro Gas Grills are made in Canada with predominantly North American parts and rank among the best.
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- Napoleon Prestige Pro Gas Grill Review
- Must-Have Accessories
- In Summation
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At the top of Napoleon’s extensive line of gas grills sit the Prestige Pro Series. These grills range in price from $2,000USD to over $4,000. The largest has ten independent burners and all the extras you can imagine. Napoleon incorporates several innovative features into their grills, from their ‘wave’ cooking grates to their infrared side burners.
The Prestige Pro Line gets close to the luxury grill range. And yet, they are built on a moderate price range model. Yes, there are many stainless steel components in these grills, but there is also the traditional cast aluminum grill body. The cart is enameled steel. Looking at the grill straight on, you will see stainless steel. Inside, you see cast aluminum, which is more durable than stainless steel. From the sides or back, you are going to see painted steel. It’s a compromise, but one worth making.
The Napoleon Prestige Pro series comes in freestanding or built-in configurations. The built-in units are excellent options for a budget-friendly outdoor kitchen design. Napoleon also offers several outdoor kitchen extras like side burners, refrigerators, and a full cabinet selection. Whether you are looking for a grill for your patio or a custom enclosure, the Napoleon Prestige Pro Line deserves your attention.
Features of the Napoleon Prestige Pro
Napoleon is known for several unique features. The most noticeable is their ‘Wave’ pattern cooking grates. This line is loaded with lights, including internal halogen lights, a fully lit control panel that adapts to your cooking, a projected logo that shows up on your patio in the dark, and even a light inside the cabinet. They also have a superior side burner that can be used for heating a pot or searing a steak.
- Infrared Side Mounted Sear Station Burner with Two-Position Stainless Steel Cooking Grate
- Combination Cutting Board and Ice Bucket Mounted on the Opposite Side Table
- Two large, multifunction side shelves
- Full Rotisserie System with Infrared Rear-Mounted Sear Burner
- Some Models Offer an Internal Smoker Burner with Wood Chip Drawer
- 9.5-Millimeter ‘Wave’ Pattern Cooking Grids
- Fully Lit Control Panel
- Internal Halogen Lights
- Circular Motion Roll-Top Lid
- Flame thrower ignition system
- Fully Convertible Between Propane and Natural Gas
The Cooking Grates
In the Prestige Pro range, these are 9.5-millimeter stainless steel. They are, well, wavy. This means a little extra metal to enhance contact heat between the grates and the food, but I like that food is less likely to fall through them than standard grill grates. Ever grilled asparagus? I’m betting you lost one. These grates are simple but quite effective. Food is less likely to fall through them.
The Prestige’s burners are standard stainless steel tubular units with dual-channel ports. Standard electric spark igniters light them. They are good and in this price range as good as they get. Another positive feature is the crossover burner that runs perpendicular to the main burners. If one burner flames out, it is automatically re-ignited by the other burners.
The main burners sit underneath two levels of stainless steel flame tamers. These divert drippings away from the burners to collect in a drip pan under the grill. In many ways, the cooking system of the Napoleon Prestige Pro Gas Grill is similar to that used in Weber Gas Grills.
The rotisserie burner and side sear burner are standard ceramic type infrared. They produce tremendous heat and do it very efficiently.
Call it what you will; Napoleon has a thing for lights. The two halogen lights that fit inside this grill are great for nighttime grilling. They are angled and give even light across the grilling surface. The LED lights on the control panel are a nice feature. Remember, these grills are made in Canada and used year-round. It gets dark early in the winter.
That the control panel lights are multifunctional might just be showing off. You can change the colors, but in the standard configuration, the control knobs are blue if the burner is off and red if it is on. You can see which burner is hot from a hundred yards away. I’m not sure what to make of the motion-sensitive light in the front of the grill that projects the Napoleon logo on the ground in front of the grill. If you want a cool grill, you might want to consider one of these.
One of the accessories I recommend for your Napoleon Prestige Pro Gas Grill is their cast iron charcoal basket. Put it in the grill, fill it with charcoal, and use the burners to light the charcoal. You now have the power and flavor of charcoal grilling or a heat and smoke source for low and slow smoking. This adds a level of cooking versatility that few gas grills can offer, particularly in this price range. I have a link below where you can buy this and other accessories.
There are three Napoleon Prestige Pro Gas Grill models, and each one is available in a freestanding or built-in configuration. The 500 and 665 models are standard gas grills. The 825 is a dual head grill. It has four standard burners under one lid and two infrared burners under a smaller, second lid. This model provides maximum versatility. You can sear steaks on one side while cooking a rotisserie turkey on the other side.
When it comes to the 665 vs. the 825, the 825 is the more versatile grill, while the 665 is the larger grill. If you need a very large cooking area, then the 665 is the model to choose. If you like restaurant-quality steaks and enjoy very high-temperature cooking, then you should consider the 825. Yes, the 500 and 665 comes with an infrared side burner, but that will only accommodate one large or two small steaks at a time.
Since the 825 has a large infrared grilling section, it does not come standard with the infrared side burner but instead comes with a 17,000 BTU power burner. Also, a very nice feature. There is also an infrared rotisserie burner in each cooking chamber.
Prestige Pro 500
Prestige Pro 500 Built-in
Prestige Pro 665
Prestige Pro 665 Built-in
Prestige Pro 825
Prestige Pro 825 Built-in
The model number of Napoleon gas grills refers to the area in square inches of the primary cooking surface. The 825 model is basically two grills divided between a 500 square inch standard grill and a 325 square inch infrared grill. The 665 model has the largest continuous cooking space.
As for the grills? They get big.
|Width||66.5 inches||76.75 inches||94.25 inches|
|Weight||254 pounds||347 pounds||469 Pounds|
|Footprint||80.5 x 45.5||96.75 X 45.5||114.25 x 45.5|
Footprint refers to the total space the grill occupies, including the safe placement zone. It is the depth and width of the grill plus 20-inches behind the grill and 7-inches on either side. These are the distances the grill should be placed away from flammable material. In the chart above, it is expressed as width x depth in inches.
As you can see, the 825 model, in particular, is a monster. The freestanding grill is nearly 8 feet across. Its safe placement zone is almost 10 feet. It also weighs 469 pounds. That is a lot of metal and if you are putting it on a deck. Make sure that the weight is distributed well.
Prestige Pro 500
- Four 12,000 BTU stainless steel tubular burners
- 500 square inches of primary grilling space for a total cooking area of 760 square inches
- 48,000 BTU maximum output from the main burners
- 14,000 BTU infrared searing side burner
- 18,000 BTU infrared rear-mounted rotisserie burner with full rotisserie kit
Prestige Pro 665
- Five 12,000 BTU stainless steel tubular burners
- 665 square inches of primary grilling space for a total cooking area of 1010 square inches
- 60,000 BTU maximum output from the main burners
- 13,000 BTU standard side burner
- 18,000 BTU infrared side burner
- 18,000 BTU rear mounted infrared rotisserie burner
- 8,000 BTU dedicated smoker burner
Prestige Pro 825
- Four 12,000 BTU standard stainless steel tubular burners
- Two 12,000 BTU ceramic infrared burners
- 855 square inches of primary grilling space for a total cooking area of 1002 square inches
- 72,000 BTU maximum output from the main burners
- One 18,000 BTU rear-mounted infrared rotisserie burner
- One 8,000 BTU dedicated smoker burner with wood chip drawer
- One 17,000 BTU infrared searing side burner
- One 8,000 BTU standard side burner
In terms of the industry standard ‘burger’ count, the 500 model can cook 22 burgers at a time, the 665 can cook 30, and the 825 can handle 36 if 14 of them were being cooked over the infrared burners, which, of course, they wouldn’t be. Any way you look at it, all of these are big grills.
Napoleon Prestige Pro Gas Grill Review
Napoleon Prestige Pro Series
It can be argued that the 1985 Weber Genesis inspired the look of the 1995 Napoleon gas grill. This is a nice way of putting it. Genesis certainly was a revolution in gas grills, and once it hit the market, there was no going back. To compete, Napoleon had to match the quality, cooking characteristics and then add their own flare that they continue to do.
To be honest, the power and quality of the Weber Genesis Gas Grills have been slowly declining for the last decade, while Napoleon has maintained the quality and added innovation. Simply put, the Prestige Pro line will do things that Weber Gas Grills cannot. Of course, Genesis is cheaper. So we have to compare these grills with the Weber Summit line. Again, Napoleon comes out on top.
The Napoleon Prestige Pro Gas Grills are quality grills. The construction is very good, and you cannot argue with the features. I know that many would say you can buy an all-stainless steel gas grill in this price range. Certainly, Blaze Grills and the Fire Magic American Outdoor Grills are comparably priced, US-made, and have complete stainless construction. However, those grills are simple compared to these grills.
Prestige Pro 500
Prestige Pro 500 Built-in
Prestige Pro 665
Prestige Pro 665 Built-in
Prestige Pro 825
Prestige Pro 825 Built-in
Napoleon Prestige and Prestige Pro grills feature a bumper-to-bumper lifetime warranty against defects in materials and workmanship on major components including the hood, stainless steel lid, porcelain enamel lid, aluminum castings, and stainless steel cooking grids, and stainless steel tube burners. The stainless steel sear plates, porcelain enamel cast iron grids, stainless steel infrared rotisserie, infrared bottom/side burner, and all other parts are warranteed for fifteen (15) years. Labor is not included.
Refer to the manufacturer’s manual for full warranty details.
You need a cover. That’s all there is to it. You even need a cover with the built-in versions of these grills. Napoleon has very good covers made for each model. Pick one up and protect your investment.
Napoleon Charcoal Tray
This is the one accessory for this grill that I consider a must. No, you can do everything without it, but with it, you can smoke on your gas grill and do a good job of it. You can do high-temperature charcoal grilling. And you can add wood chunks for all the smoky flavor you want. It’s only $50USD and if you want you can get more than one.
The charcoal basket fits over the gas burners and under the cooking grates. You can use it for indirect smoking and grilling or direct grilling. And you don’t need lighter fluid because you use the burners to light the charcoal.
Little Griddle Professional Stainless Steel Griddle
I bet you’ve seen all those videos of people cooking on a flat top. You can do it on your gas grill with the griddle insert: one grill, every form of cooking. La Griddle makes the best. This all stainless steel unit heats evenly and lets you grill everything from smash burgers to omelets. It dramatically expands your grill’s cooking abilities. This ‘griddle’ is 16 pounds of metal. It will hold a lot of heat which is vital for flat-top cooking.
Rotisserie Grill Basket
So many people overlook the potential of rotisserie cooking. Yes, it’s great for chickens. It is also perfect for grill roasting vegetables, chicken wings, shrimp, and anything else. This grill basket fits onto the rotisserie rod that comes with the grill and allows you to cook all the little things. Rotisserie cooking is the evenest method of grill cooking, and this basket lets you grill nearly anything.
Weber Summit S-470
The Weber Summit S-470 is the same price as the Napoleon Prestige Pro 500. It has the same number of main burners, nearly the same cooking area, and is constructed of the same materials. In most ways, they are very much the same grill. If you choose Weber over Napoleon, you won’t be disappointed. You won’t get the infrared side burner or the fancy lights. The quality difference isn’t huge either. The Napoleon is a little heavier and has a bit more to offer. These are very comparable grills. If it matters to you, the Weber is made in China, and the Napoleon is made in Canada.
Broil King Regal S 690 PRO
Broil King is another Canadian grill company that has been making grills for decades. The Broil King Regal S 690 PRO is similar to the Napoleon Prestige Pro 885. Both are dual-head grills. However, the Broil King has two standard grills instead of a standard and an infrared. The Broil King does have an infrared side burner so that you can reverse sear a steak. And it comes with a full rotisserie system. While not of the same quality, The Broil King is $1500USD cheaper and made in the United States.
Fire Magic makes some of the best and most expensive gas grills in the world. Their American Outdoor Grill or AOG series is the budget friend line of grills. This three-burner unit costs well over $3000USD, however. But what you get is all high-quality stainless steel construction. There is no cast aluminum or painted steel, and it features a rotisserie burner and a side burner. This is the best option if you want the best, inexpensive stainless steel gas grill.
The Napoleon Prestige Pro Gas Grills are the best of this style of grill. Above this price range, you are well into complete stainless steel construction, though not necessarily better performance or durability. Because these grills use a mixture of metals, they can put more money into features. And that is the big point here. Want a simple grill? You can certainly save money with a Weber Genesis, a Broil King, or a Napoleon Prestige or Rogue.
But when it comes to features, these grills are loaded. Side burners that sear steaks or heat large pots. Full rotisserie systems. Smoker burners with a smoker box. They have it all, and they do it very well. True, you might be paying over $4,000USD for the biggest of these grills, but you get so much. And you get durability and a great warranty.
Napoleon vs. Weber
Weber is the industry leader in almost every category of outdoor cooking. So the big question is, who makes the better grill. A decade ago, I would have said to put your money on Weber. Better value. But Weber’s gas grills have gotten lighter and weaker over the years. Weber is known for service and a great warranty. The Napoleon warranty is better. You can’t call them 24×7, but is that really a thing anymore?
Of course, the warranty is only good if you plan on using it. The truth is, you shouldn’t need it. Not with a well-built grill. When it comes to what’s important, Napoleon has better build quality, more power, and much more innovation. Where the grills are comparable in price, Napoleon has more stainless steel and more features. It is simply a better value.
I have been writing about Barbecue & Grilling for 25 years. I have cooked on almost every grill or smoker ever built. In those years I have always endeavored to match people with the grill or smoker that is right for them. I believe that the right product is the one that you find easy to use, capable of doing everything you want, and is reliable. If you have a good first experience, you will be back for more. In this way, we grow barbecue for the next generation. I want you to make the memories that your children will cherish.
This article and the website it appears on uses sales affiliates to cover the cost of operation. If you choose to purchase a product through the links I have provided, a portion of that sale will go to me. It helps me create content so I can help you and others have the best barbecue experience. I am grateful to all my readers over the years that have been so kind as to assist me in my exploration of outdoor cooking. Thank you.