Flymo XL500 Plus

Flymo XL500 Plus Petrol Rotary Mower

Flymo XL500 Plus Petrol Rotary Mower

PRO‘s: Lightweight, powerful engine, quiet, loves slopes !

CON‘s: Doesn’t collect cuttings but does reasonable job of mulching them

VERDICT: An outstanding mower for awkward areas of large gardens


TODAYS BEST PRICE: £430.00 from Lawn Mowers UK

Although they are best known for their electric hover mowers, Flymo make petrol hover mowers as well. Designed for large gardens and/or hard to access areas, the Flymo XL500 Plus boasts a quiet but powerful four-stroke Honda engine. But is it any good ?

The Flymo XL500 Plus is a fairly conventional looking hover mower consisting of a sturdy cutting deck, a height adjustable handle and a steel blade. Not surprisingly it has much in common with other members of the Flymo hover mower family but the inclusion of a powerful Honda GCV160 four-stroke petrol engine really makes it stand out.

The Flymo XL500 Plus replaces the older two-stroke petrol hover mowers that Flymo used to make and what a difference the new Honda GCV160 engine makes. Although the mower is slightly heavier than the older versions at 15 kg, the engine is considerably more powerful so that, when it’s riding on its cushion of air, it’s an absolutely joy to move around.

This is good news because one of it’s strengths is its ability to work on a slope – in fact, it can cut banks of grass that slope up to 45 degrees without starving the engine of oil. Most mowers can work for very short periods of time at an angle so this feature makes the Flymo XL500 Plus stand out and is why it’s often used by professional grass cutters.

Compared to other petrol rotary mowers it’s quite light to carry about as it doesn’t have any wheels and this makes it ideal if you’ve got a garden on lots of different levels. However, should you need to move it long distances there is an optional wheel kit – mind you, this is not cheap at around £100.

Assembly was straight forward enough as all we had to do was to unfold the handle and fill the engine with oil and add fuel. All in all, from opening the box to cutting the grass took less than 10 minutes.

Starting the Flymo XL500 Plus is straight forward enough – thanks to its manual choke it started first time every time, even when pulled out of the back of a damp shed. The only issue is that you’ll need to tip the body of the mower slightly when starting it to avoid the blade marking the grass. This is because, since the mower lacks wheels, there’s nothing to stop the blade hitting the grass but as soon as the blade starts to spin the air cushion builds up under the mower and it starts to hover.

Its wide 51 cm (20 inch) cutting width makes relatively short work of cutting large areas of grass and we’re glad to report that it’s fairly quiet in use too. There are three cutting heights between 10 and 30 mm and we’re glad to report that it coped with all kinds of grass, even long wet grass with ease.

It a pretty good job of mulching the cuttings although it does blow some around. We did find that if we cut close to paths and driveways it did tend to blow cuttings some distance on to these. It’s a minor issue – two minutes with a broom soon cleared them up.

As Flymo XL500 Plus doesn’t collect the grass cuttings or leave a stripe it isn’t intended to be the sole lawnmower in a formal gardens. Where it excels is cutting all the fiddly bits around the edges and under shrubs either on the flat or on slopes. Thanks to its light weight and outstanding maneoverability we have no hesitation in recommending this mower.

Todays Latest Prices for Flymo XL500 Plus

Stockist Catalogue Product Name Price  
Lawn Mowers UK Flymo XL500 Plus Petrol Hover Mower £430.00 Visit Store
Machine Mart Flymo Flymo XL500 Petrol Hover Mower £479.99 Visit Store
B and Q Not in stock when last checked
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Tooled Up Not in stock when last checked
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Wickes Not in stock when last checked
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