Fender Musical Instruments Corporation’s Fender Custom Shop has announced the launch of a limited-edition Fender Lexus LC Stratocaster guitar, the newest custom-built piece from Ron Thorn, principal master builder.
“As a deep car enthusiast, this was a fun project to build off,” says Thorn. “We went bold with the technical specs to make this model a living Lexus guitar. I can’t wait to see how everyone rocks out to it,”
The guitar features an omnidirectional Structural Blue finish – a spectral range that produces a light-metallic to deep midnight-blue color inspired by the Morpho butterfly, whose uncommonly large iridescent-blue wings create the illusion that the beautiful insect disappears and reappears in mid-flight. Until now, the only other use of Structural Blue has been on the Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series coupe and convertible. The fasteners on the guitar’s pickguard are black-button machine head screws that create a clean automotive appearance, and the latest version of Fender’s Noiseless pickups are used here by the Custom Shop for the first time. The fingerboard is a polished deep blue made from Richlite, a material new to the Fender Custom Shop and selected exclusively for this build given its similarity to components in Lexus vehicles. To match the Lexus sound system configuration, Thorn included custom machined-brushed aluminum knobs to match the auto’s Mark Levinson knobs while reducing the typical number of Stratocaster guitar control knobs from three to two – Master Volume and Master Tone.
“Collaborating with Lexus to conceptualize, design and build the Fender Lexus LC Stratocaster has been an incredible ride,” says Mike Lewis, vice president of product development, Fender Custom Shop. “The process our team took to design this Strat has certainly been a labor of love, as well as a source of inspiration and excitement around the shop. Our team is constantly building innovative products and this launch is another great representation of craftsmanship and creativity at Fender.”
“When we saw the first iteration of this Stratocaster, we couldn’t believe how well it matched the original LC 500 Inspiration Series,” says Vinay Shahani, vice president, Lexus marketing. “It’s amazing to see this partnership come together based on our respective brands’ mutual admiration for one another. Seeing our Structural Blue color represented in this Stratocaster guitar illustrates endless possibilities of creativity, and we’re honored to have been a part of this creation.”
“We are thrilled that the Lexus-developed Structural Blue paint technology is being applied to a Fender Stratocaster,” says Christopher Yang, vice president of portfolio business management, Lexus. “To help bring such ideas to market, we will continue to explore opportunities, such as the partnership with Fender, to share our technology and intellectual property with partners across multiple industries.”
Fender Custom Shop will be releasing 100 team-built Fender Lexus LC Stratocaster guitars globally.