If your paying cash, you would be crazy not to look for something a year or two old. You can easily find one with under 250 hours, which is the same as new, and you will be saving a lot of cash. I know, I made that same mistake 2 years ago. Wish I could do it again.
I learned the hard way that tractors take a huge hit in the first few years. Good luck in whatever you decide.
I think you need to find another dealer. I recommend checking with at least 3 for the best deal and to find the best dealer.
I would also be concerned about warranty on a new tractor because the probability of a failure is relatively high at the start. For tractors it is called a bathtub curve. High rate at the start dropping quickly to a low, flat line once early hour failures are fixed, followed by a gradual upsweep as it nears wear out. Having said that, I am near the end of the warranty period of my second Kubota, have only the winter snow plowing before it is out, and my tractors have had no failures, have never seen the dealership since leaving the lot. My latest Kubota came at 13.7% off, and I almost forgot, I bought a RTV from him this year and ado got around 14% off. That was without a cash discount - I used the 60 month zero percent financing. I would sure try Barlows if your local dealer is going to play hardball. I know your cost of living is high in New England, but they still need to be competitive. When I was living in Europe and needed to replace my European version car with a USA version, I tried the local Minneapolis dealers and they wouldn't talk deal at all, so I got on the Internet and dealt with a New Jersey car dealer. He gave me a great deal and also got my recommendation for two colleagues who faced the same situation. So to me I think your dealer doesn't have any reason not to cut you a good deal and I would definitely talk to Barlows if I were you.
You mentioned Max28 TLB...
You should be able to get that for near 21000.... leaving a little for tax and toys...tools, I mean.
As I said, I would contact Barlows, by phone would be best. Get a price and then tell them of your concerns and then decide. New England seams to be very high price wise. I understand the extra costs of doing business up here but a couple of bucks off of retail is just over the top IMO. If there is more than one dealer around I wouldn't worry too much about service. There's plenty of people who have and warranty work done by different dealers than where they bought it.
Thanks all of you for some very good advice. I'm going to check with both Barlow's and Emerich and see what they have to say. If nothing else, like a couple of you posted it will give me some bargaining chips with dealers around here. I found 3 more dealers within and hour of me so I think I'll be paying them a visit too. I'll also keep an eye out too for what I'm looking for in the used market.
The advice, input and experience available on this site is invaluable. You guys are the best, thank you!
This may be too obvious to mention, but did the dealer know you were paying cash vs. financing? There are substantial discounts for cash payment (or, to put it another way, substantial penalties for financing).