Although you can’t judge a shotgun’s performance by its exterior, it doesn’t necessarily follow that its appearance is irrelevant. A gun is as much a collection of designs as it is an object, and how it looks and feels matters. I was reminded of this recently while looking at a new AyA over/under Legend de Luxe, which stands in sharp contrast to the Spanish company’s old Merkel-inspired Model No. 37. The Legend de Luxe features Boss-style trunnion hinges and a Perazzi-style central cocking bar and locking bolts—all of which are not just mechanical improvements but also make for an altogether slicker aesthetic and slimmer profile that suggests better handling.
The Legend de Luxe comes in 12 and 20 gauge with a forged steel action featuring hand-cut “English style engraving.” A selective single trigger and manual safety featuring a barrel selector are standard. The monoblock barrels have 3″ chambers, come in a variety of lengths, and are chrome lined and suitable for steel shot. Stocks are oil-finished walnut and come with straight-hand, semi-pistol or full-pistol grips. Both game and clay versions are available.
First introduced in the UK in 2019, the Legend de Luxe can be ordered through New England Custom Gun Service, Ltd., of Claremont, New Hampshire. At press time NECG had a 12-gauge demo gun available with 28-inch barrels, Briley choke tubes and a 15-inch stock. The price of the Legend de Luxe is $8,695.
Fine shotguns are handcrafted with the intention that they should outlive their owners, but passé designs make poor legacy gifts. AyA has taken its O/U models and incrementally, gradually and inexorably innovated. The Legend de Luxe may be the finest and best-looking over/under the company has ever built.
For more information, contact New England Custom Gun Service.