I have owned 4 Colt 1911's, 2 for IPSC Limited and two for carry. All of them required a talented gunsmith to make them right.
All I can say is that my Colt has been 100% reliable from the first shot. That seems pretty "right" to me.
That's a LOT more than I can say for a lot of 1911s I've encountered (including Kimbers, S&Ws, and SIGs).
I agree that the sky's the limit for improvements/modifications, though. My two main issues with my particular pistol described above (poorly-fit thumb safety and stiff trigger) have been adressed at this point, however, and I am very happy with this Colt.