When you are thinking about buying a pontoon boat, whether new or used, the background of the manufacturer could be important to you. For example, do you want to buy American, something local to you, and want to know that the boat is being built by a company that’s got a great reputation?

Pontoon boats are a very American thing, and the top 10 manufacturers who build and make them are all located in the United States. In fact, there is a large concentration of manufacturers in the Indiana and Michigan regions. If you scroll down to see where the individual brands and companies are located, you will certainly see some themes developing in terms of their location and where the boats are all made.

Whilst I don’t doubt that some of the components that go into building the boats will come from abroad, especially some electronics, the majority of the boat will be made in this country.

Below I’ve listed out the top 10 manufacturers in the industry, with a little detail about each one, plus details on where their pontoons are designed, built, made, and manufactured.

Where Are Bennington Pontoon Boats Made?

Where are Bennington pontoon boats manufactured? They are based and headquartered in a place called Elkhart in Indiana. I believe that they are still privately owned by the guys who formed the company in 1997 (read this update).

Bennington also have an agreement with the StanCraft Boat Company, who lend design and construction work on around 35 pontoons each year from their Hayden, Idaho location.

Steve Vogel, one of the Bennington co-founders says that “about 10 percent of our production is custom. Some of our best ideas come from customers”. So if you feedback to them what you want made next or any improvements, chances are it could happen in the future. 

Where Are Manitou Pontoon Boats Made?

In 2015, Manitou moved their manufacturing facility from Delta Township to Lancing in Michigan and have remained there ever since. That’s where they make their pontoons, having been in the Michigan area since they were established in the mid nineteen eighties. 

Just like Bennington, they are also privately held, and are renowned for their high-quality workmanship, attention to design detail, and hold the patent for their unique V-Toon technology.

Where Are Bentley Pontoon Boats Made?

Bentley Pontoons was recently owned by Encore Boat Builders, but they themselves have now sold up the brand to a newly formed company called Bentley Acquisition LLC. Currently the manufacturing plant is located in Lexington, South Carolina where they make their own components, such as furniture, tubes and railings.

Steve Deese, the founder and president of Encore Boat Builders, has become one of the largest pontoon dealers in the country. 

Where Are Premier Pontoon Boats Made?

Premier Pontoons describe themselves as America’s only premium, family-owned pontoon business. The company was started in one small building back in 1992, but today employs over 200 men and women in 8 buildings at their manufacturing plant in Minnesota.

Unfortunately, in 2017, Premier Pontoons filed for bankruptcy. At point of publishing this guide to where pontoon boats are made, it’s unknown what the financial status of the business is. 

  • Year Established: 1992
  • Head Office Location: Wyoming, Minnesota
  • Website: pontoons.com 

Where Are Sweetwater Pontoon Boats Made?

In 2015, Bennington Marine acquired the Nautic Global Group which owned the Sweetwater and Godfrey pontoon brand. Godfrey introduced the world’s first aluminum pontoon boat over 60 years ago and made a wide range of toons to suit all passions.

Since the Bennington takeover, the Godfrey and Sweetwater brands are now located at the main Elkhart, Indiana, manufacturing plant. One of the world’s oldest brands, you can still buy Sweetwater badged boats. 

Where Are Godfrey Pontoon Boats Made?

As above, Godfrey Marine was acquired by the Bennington Marine brand in 2015. Bennington boats are made in Elkhart, Indiana at a large manufacturing plant. Godfrey pioneered many of the systems that have become industry standards. 

The Godfrey Marine company has the Sanpan, Sweetwater, and Aqua Patio pontoons under its umbrella brand.

Where Are Crest Pontoon Boats Made?

Crest pontoon boats are manufactured from their Michigan base, where they have been located since the nineteen fifties. The model he crafted was a twenty foot steel pontoon, purpose built for diving. Due to consumer demand, production begins in Owosso, Michigan where it has remained to this day.

In 2010, the Crest family sold the company to a Michigan group. 

Where Are Avalon Pontoon Boats Made?

Avalon is a vertically integrated pontoon manufacturer. That means that everything they make is done from their own factory in Alma, Michigan. They say that this gives them a far higher control over production – and who’s to argue? They make stunning pontoon boats.

For over 40 years, the name Avalon has been a signifier of quality, and I hope that remains the same for the future. 

Where Are Harris Pontoon Boats Made? 

One of the oldest manufacturers of pontoon boats, Harris was established in Fort Wayne, Indiana, all the way back in 1957. Inspired by an increasing number of people building early pontoon boats on 55-gallon barrels and drop tanks from airplanes, the two Harris brothers founded Harris FloteBote Marine company.

Due to the increasing popularity of pontoons, the company expanded operations in 2013 into include a 360,000-square foot manufacturing plant, which s where all their boats are currently being made. 

  • Year Established: 1957
  • Head Office Location: Fort Wayne, Indiana
  • Website: harrisboats.com

Where Are Sylvan Pontoon Boats Made? 

You won’t get much older than Sylvan, as they were established in 1948. Their factory remains to this day in New Paris, Indiana where the Sylvan, Smokercraft, and StarCraft boats are all manufactured.

Sylvan Marine were the first pontoon manufacturer to offer boats with colored side panels and they are said to have pioneered the development of the high-performance pontoons that we know and love today. 

  • Year Established: 1948
  • Head Office Location: New Paris, Indiana
  • Website: sylvanmarine.com