Here is my experience of buying a new Lagoon 450 four years ago:
I bought my boat the Miami boat show
from a California-based dealer.
I took possession of the boat in La Rochelle and spent 2.5 months commissioning the boat as well as sorting problems.
*ALL* of my problems were caused by my dealer in California
taking every shortcut he could to pocket extra cash.
For example, at Miami
there was a special if you entered into contract
at that time they would toss in the Highfield 3.5 + Honda
20HP for free. Upon delivery
the dealer simply didn't order the dinghy
from Lagoon. Lagoon showed me the internal order paperwork with no dinghy
specified. I confronted him and he tried for 2 weeks to convince me that what I want is a roll-up 3 person dink and a 2.5HP engine! That is one example, he shorted many of the vendors doing the commissioning.
At the end of the day I went to the big boat show in La Rochelle and politely but firmly stayed on the Lagoon 620 flagship and described my problems with the dealer to the senior marketing
VP. To my amazement he gave me the Highfield 3.5 & 20 HP right off the Lagoon 620, and he sent additional crews over the next week to take care of all the other gaps of delivery
from my dealer, and Lagoon took care of the subcontractors screwed by the dealer.
And as a result Lagoon terminated him as a dealer. (Later in Porto we ran into another ex-customer of his with similiar woes.)
I can understand why Lagoon insulates themselves from customers, a big catamaran
is complex, and sure some cruisers are amazing and know their stuff and wouldn't waste the factory's time. But from hard experience, I bet Lagoon is happy to let the dealers make some money
and buffer themselves so that they can focus on making the most luxurious cats they can at the lowest price
That being said would I buy a Lagoon again? Yes, for sure. We have had no major system faults and we use the boat pretty hard. Would I buy new or used? Actually, I would be pretty attracted to used, not because I think Lagoon has bad QC, but because boats are complex and owners do add a lot of value in the first few years out of enthusiasm they add a lot of cool/useful bits. So I think used probably has the best value. However, *if* I was to buy new from Lagoon, I would only go one of two ways:
(1) Buy from a high-volume dealer in the Carib such as the one in St Martin
. They are big enough that they are not struggling from raw cash flow and they have a reputation they want to protect, so they will take care of it.
(2) Buy it from a french dealer and remain in La Rochelle until happy (as I did)
PS> Anecdotally I have heard that the L52 does have relatively more fit and finish problems than the rest of the line. I don't know if the crew working that line are not as well resourced as the rest of the teams, or is it simply that the L52 is a new model and they are still learning
how to build the boat?