Price reductions in recent years have made the wide stainless steel ranges and stoves more popular. They used to be mostly imported from Europe but lately often come from Asia, where manufacturing costs are lower. Even the well know European brands are sourcing such products in Asia now.
In New Zealand, the range is commonly called the freestanding oven. More commonly it’s called a stove. The kitchen appliance that removes cooking fumes is still called a rangehood. What separates an oven from a stove is the built-in hob and the fact that the whole unit sits independently on the floor between cabinets, rather than being built in. So the term freestanding oven is something of a misnomer.
The wide stoves or ranges are sometimes very wide at up to 1500 mm and often feature two ovens. The cook top of these wide appliances can give enormous space and provide a wide range of cooking options such wok stands, fish kettles, griddles, tepanyaki, etc. all in one independent package. Such a stove tends to be the focal point of the kitchen, especially when paired with a good rangehood and splashback.
The wider stoves and ranges sit in their own space and require equally wide range hoods and splashbacks. Of course the good-old white enameled kitchen stove will always remain popular because of its price.
Free standing ranges and stoves sit in their own space between kitchen benchtops. Stone, granite and timber benchtops are particularly appropriate for a stylish range but laminate can work well also.