Lagoon Catamarans came to life in the eighties, in 1984 to be precise, as an arm of JTA (Jeanneau´s sporty department – “Jeanneau Techniques Avancées” (Jeanneau advanced technics).
Their aim was to inject some performance into the catamaran market which was at that time dominated by cruising cats such as Prout, the UK manufacturer and world leader at the time.
If you are looking for a Lagoon on the second hand market, check out our Lagoon Catamarans For Sale page which has all of our current listings.
Yes, Lagoon Made Fast Cats
And so was born the legendary offshore cruising range: the 55, 47, 57, 67 and 67S. In 1995, Lagoon was purchased by Beneteau, one of the leaders of crusing production monohulls, and the brand´s direction took a turn. They took over the Jenneau shipyard and handed over the development of the Lagoon range to CNB (Construction Navale Bordeaux).
More Comfort and Space
The design brief now became one of more comfort and space while developing innovative construction methods. From 1997 to 2003, Lagoon Catamarans launched a flurry of new designs: the 380, 410, 440, 470, 500 and 570: yachts that remain popular and in demand today. Innovations included the vertical saloon windows on the 410 to maximise living space.
It was during this period that Lagoon cemented its position as the market leader in catamaran production, taking over from Prout in the UK which had drifted into financial difficulties.
In 2004, Lagoon launched the legendary 440 with its chunky nacelle (an idea inspired by Prout). This was the first catamaran under 45 feet to be fitted with a flybridge and remains one of Lagoon´s most successful models with 423 hulls produced.
In 2009, Lagoon started to think big with the launch of the 620 and in 2010 they launched the 450 – their most successful model to date after the 380 and 400 (in terms of units sold). In terms of profit, the 450 probably hits top spot.
The Fourth Generation
In 2012, Lagoon launched the 52 which set the design philosophy going forward. With the mast stepped further back to help short handed sailing (another Prout trick), she is easy to sail with a small crew despite her size: the self tacking jib takes care of itself and the mainsail is relatively easy to manage for a 50 foot boat (especially with an electric winch).
They followed this in 2016 with the Lagoon 42 and a whole range of sizes either side (40, 46, 50).
The Fifth Generation
And in 2017, they took another design leap with the launch of the Seventy 7, followed by the Sixty 5 and the 55 in 2021.
Lagoon celebrated the launch of its 6,000th catamaran since 1987 in 2021. This compares to Fountaine Pajot, with around 4,000 units since 1976, and South Leopard, with about 2,500 built over the past two decades.
The History of Lagoon Catamarans
More details on the boats are provided below this timeline. They have launched a lot of boats!
1984 Lagoon founded as an arm of Jenneau: JTA – Jeanneau Techniques Avancées
1987-1995 1st Generation Lagoons: 55, 57
1991 Lagoon 42 TPI
1992 Lagoon 37 TPI
1992 Lagoon 47
1995 Lagoon 67 and 67S
1995 Lagoon purchased by Beneteau.
1996 Lagoon 35 launched
1997- 2005 2nd Generation Lagoons, 380, 410, 470 and 570.
2004 440, the first 3rd Generation with flybridge launched
2005 Lagoon 500
2006, Lagoon 420
2009 Lagoon launch their flagship: the 620. The 400 is launched, another very successful model in terms of sales. The 421 upgrade hits the market.
2010 450F launched, one of their most successful models to date.
2011 Lagoon 560
2012 the first 4th Generation model, the 52F was splashed.
2013 Lagoon 39
2015 The Sport model, 52S with bulkhead helm hit the market. Also the 450S
2016 Lagoon 42
2017 5th Generation design launched with the Seventy 7 flagship. Lagoon 50 launched
2017 Lagoon 40. The shipyard builds 400 boats a year.
2019 Lagoon 46
2020 Lagoon Sixty 5 (5th Gen.)
2021 The new Lagoon 55 launches. 6,000th catamaran launched.
Lagoon – All of the Catamarans
Lagoon 55, 57, Lagoon 57S (1984)
The 55 was Lagoon’s original design and what a way to launch a brand! They later offered an extended version: the 57. Along with the 47 and the 67, these yachts remain very popular – classic performance catamarans from Lagoon’s early days. Lagoon built 20 55s and 14 57s I believe.
The 57S is the Sport version built with carbon and kevlar reinforcements making these cats more rigid. At 16.9 m long and 9.2m wide they are very stable and seaworthy. Light weight is 17 tonnes.
The smallest of the older performance designs from pre Beneteau days, the Lagoon 42 was launched with the 37 to appeal to buyers with more modest budgets. They were built in the USA by the shipyard Tillotson Pearson Inc. She was a real success for Lagoon thanks to her ample living space and seaworthiness.
Following the Lagoon 55 and 57, Lagoon moved to make their catamarans more accessible to a wider market: the Lagoon 42 and Lagoon 37 were launched in the 90’s and 41 were built in the USA by Tillotson Pearson Inc. Composite, a pioneer in the composite infusion process. The Moorings rebranded the Lagoon 37 as the Moorings 3700.
The Lagoon 37 was launched at the end of 1992. With a powerful sail plan for its size, this comfortable catamaran is pretty nippy. 43 Lagoon 37 hulls were built by TPI in the States. Following that, production moved to France. They built 8 in France I believe before they they launched the 410 and 470. The French built 37s have smaller windows in the saloon and aluminum toe rails.
One of the Lagoon catamarans with a turn of speed from Jenneau days, the 47 is still sought after on the second hand market. This boat is now seen as something of a classic (along with her larger sisters, the 57 and 67). With her twin aft helms and ample living space, this was a very successful model from the early Lagoon days.
Lagoon 35 (1995)
Along with the 37 and 42, the 35 was built by TPI in the US. This was the least successful model of the range with only 11 units built. She was designed by Morrelli and Melvin who later went on to design the early Gunboats.
Lagoon 67, 67S (1995)
If you have been following Katamarans for a while, you´ll know that the Lagoon 67 is one of our favourite catamaran designs of all time. How did they design such a perfect boat so early on? We struggle to think of a prettier looking catamaran.
The 67 was launched in 1995 as a semi-custom catamaran. One “sporty 67S” was built: with a bigger rig, taller carbon mast, carbon bridgedeck, and structural bulkheads in carbon.
Examples include La Perla and Marmot (below)
Lagoon 410 (1997)
The Lagoon 410 was the first in the new series of designs after the brand was bought by Beneteau and they veered towards comfort over performance.
Compared to the sportier Lagoon 42, VPLP made this boat roomier inside and put the saloon on a level with the cockpit (pretty innovative at the time). The keels were made fuller, with more volume on the ends of the hulls to reduce pitching. The 410 was made wider to improve lateral stability, safety and volume. They reduced the size of the main and increased the size of the jib with the same overall sail area.
Now a classic catamaran, with a legion of fans and still very popular on the second hand market. They built 283 of them, a very successful model.
The 470 was VPLP´s updated design of the 47 after the company veered more towards comfort. But in these early days, they didn´t stray too far from the performance heritage of the brand, so the 470 moves well too with a powerful sail plan. The big change to the profile was those vertical saloon windows which opened up the space inside.
At 10 knots displacement, she will still get moving in lighter air if you get the gennaker up.
The early 470’s into 2000 were built on a 47 hull with the newer 470 cabin. In later years, the hulls became beamier and a foot longer with more freeboard. Thanks to the Lagoon Owner’s Group on Facebook for the information. In total, 51 were built.
Lagoon 380 (1999)
Photo Nicolas Claris
One of the most successful Lagoon catamaran models of all time in terms of sales, no question. Read our full Lagoon 380 review for the full low down on why this is such a great little boat. It just hits the sweet spot on so many levels for its price point and size and remains a strong seller on the second hand market. It´s the Prout Snowgoose of the noughties, a classic catamaran.
The 570 is to the 57 what the 470 is to the 47, if you catch my drift. This was the updated design of the performance classic following the purchase of Lagoon by Beneteau, and while VPLP moved the design dial towards more space and comfort with the now trademark vertical saloon windows, for example, they didn´t move it that far. You get a nice balance with this boat.
This is not a boat that is that easy to sail short-handed though. Lagoon have made this easier and easier on their more recent larger boat designs, but this was still pretty early days for the company.
Lagoon 440 (2004)
The Lagoon 440 has the trademark vertical panoramic saloon windows with a centered flybridge which positions the helm up high. This was a brave step in 2004 and a precursor to the 450- one of Lagoon´s most successful models.
The hulls are voluminous with mid-sized keels. Like many Lagoons, the hulls and cabin below the waterline are solid epoxy laminate while the topsides are a composite cored sandwich of fiberglass, epoxy, and balsa.
With all that space freed up with the flybridge helm, she delivers on space down below. And another innovation that has proved to be very popular is the foredeck lounge area for those Sundowners at anchor. The Lagoon 440 is still very popular on the second hand market. They built 423 of them.
Lagoon 500 (2005)
Photo Credit: Nicolas Claris
If Lagoon invented the cruising cat flybridge concept on the 440, the 500 maxed it to the full. This cat handles chop well and powers along in a reach in a breeze, but visibility forward can be difficult from that helm up top when you have the big jib set. Lagoon built 150 of this model.
Lagoon 420 (2006), 421 (2009)
The 420 was unashamedly built for comfort with its bulky coachroof and high freeboard. It was gamble that paid off, as this was a successful seller. Market research delivered, in this case and 179 hulls were built.
In 2009, they updated the model into the 421 with more sail area: these are the ones to look out for if you are snooping around the second hand market. The original boat was sluggish under 12 knots of wind- the 421 improved its performance in this regard. 96 hulls were produced.
The overall hull height was lowered and the sail area increased by around 4sqm. Changes were made to the hulls aft below the waterline to ‘improve hydro dynamic efficiency’. Source: Thks to noshoes-resoled.
The Lagoon 420 and 421 offer big comfort for their size thanks to the volume in the nacelle and spacious cabins. An dependable long-term comfortable cruising boat. Check out our Lagoon 421 For Sale page if you are looking for one of these cruising catamarans on the second hand market.
Lagoon 620 (2009)
With the 620, we are getting to the Big Lagoon Catamarans and this means plenty of options for customisation. At 62 feet, you can go for as many as five double cabins with island berths or as few as three. The galley can be up or down which again gives you plenty of scope to develop an individual design.
Head upstairs onto the flybridge, and you´ll notice that she has 2 helms and the aft cabins have direct access to the exterior.
Lagoon 400 (2009)
With a square topped mainsail to boost the sail area, the 400 is a very competent sailor as long as you don´t try and pinch her too close to the wind, and she tacks well. The basic structure consists of a solid laminate under the waterline with balsa core above, including the decks.
The hulls and decks are infused with polyester, and Lagoon layers vinylester resin onto the hulls to protect against osmosis.
In 2012 Lagoon launched a refreshed design (interior upgrade mostly) called the Lagoon 400 S2.
I have heard from the Lagoon Owner’s Facebook Group that the 400 is probably #2 in terms of units sold behind the 380 with almost 1000 produced. Makes sense. I think the 40 and 42 are catching up fast.
An example of one of these popular boats is Ocean Fox, Hull #233, which was built in 2012.
A top selling 50 footer. In 2017, Lagoon announced the #100 hull, so they must be well beyond that now.
Lagoon 52F (2012) and 52S (2015)
Photo Credit: Nicolas Claris
The Lagoon 52 comes in Sport Top version (52S) and Flybridge (52F). This is “only” a 52 footer, but inside it feels huge. If you go for the flybridge option, even more so, she’s luxury at anchor at its best.
The new look is more angular and muscly with a mast position which has been moved aft bringing benefits in both performance and handling. The high aspect mainsail keeps the canvas high where the breeze is most steady and the shorter boom is easier to control when short-handed. With her large self-tacking genoa she moves nicely.
On the flybridge, the Lagoon 52F has oodles of space with a central helm that pivots to port or starboard to improve visibility when sailing or docking.
Lagoon 39 (2013)
Well, we all thought that the 39 was going to take over from the 380 didn´t we? But it never really happened. I am not sure why, because this is a great looking boat that performs well and is easy to sail, but everyone just kept continuing to order the 380 and it never took off.
She carries about the same sail area as the 380 but is significantly heavier at 11.6 tonnes. That’s probably the main reason.
Lagoon 42 (2016)
The Lagoon 42 looks like it may overtake the 380 and become Lagoon’s most successful model to date. They seem to have nailed the performance/comfort equation with this boat. As well as having plenty of living space, she moves well.
Upwind, like most Lagoons, she will be happiest sitting at around 60 to true. You might just squeeze in some 110 degree tacks, but she should shunt along at 7 knots or so in a breeze heading upwind. The 42 is a really solid cruising catamaran. This is a large 42 footer!
This design was developed from the bottom up by VPLP and Patrick Le Quement. She continues with the current trend of setting the mast further aft for a shorter boom and mainsail than is easier to handle.
The deck plan has been completely rethought versus her predecessors and she feels really spacious.
The WOW factors keep coming with this boat with its balcony off the master suite, jacuzzi on the flybridge and the new sleek profile. If you want to live the high life, there are worse ways of doing it than on a Lagoon Seventy 7.
Lagoon 40 (2018)
The Lagoon 40 is the current entry level model for the French manufacturer since they stopped production of the 380.
This is a worthy successor to the 400 that incorporates many of the features that you will see on the 42, albeit in a smaller package. The 40 will undoubtedly become one of Lagoon’s top selling models.
The mast is further aft than the 400 (in keeping with all of the newer designs), so you have a more powerful jib and a mainsail that is easier to handle. She’s a neat looking catamaran. At 10 tonnes, she is no lightweight, but Lagoon knows their market, and that means decent enough sailing performance and maximum comfort for her length.
The Sixty 5 is not quite the Lagoon flagship, but she´s almost! This is another foray into the Supercat market which Sunreef dominates. Lagoon are really starting to snap at their heels with these Big Cats.
With 32 feet or 10m of beam, the Sixty 5 has about 1,500 square feet of living, deck and bridge space. The cockpit is enormous, the saloon as well, the galley looks straight out of a Manhattan apartment and the flybridge area tops it all off for cocktails or even a dinner party (when you´re not sailing). Add the lounging area at the front of the boat and you have a serious entertainment platform.
Choose between five or six cabins. The fully battened mainsail and furling genoa, add up to 268m2, which will power the Lagoon Sixty5’s 40 tonnes light displacement. Along with her bigger sister, the Sixty 5 has a new sleek profile while retaining all of those trademark Lagoon features like the vertical windows. You can see these design cues will filter down to the smaller boats in time.
The flybridge will take up 80% of the roof space on this comfortable cat with 2 big sun loungers forward of the helm and a huge C shape sofa behind.
The central table telescopes down to create another large sunbathing area. Aft, the Lagoon 51 has large and wide transoms for ease of access at the dock and with the “Tenderlift” platform, the whole area converts into a large balcony or bathing platform on the sea.
This cruising catamaran has an option to install up to 3,400W of solar
If you enjoyed this history of Lagoon Catamarans, you might also like the following articles exploring the back story of other catamaran manufacturers:
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