Collaborations between high-end carmakers and lifestyle brands are pretty commonplace these days as carmakers try to elevate their brand image, but they’re usually reserved for products such as sneakers and watches, or at the most extreme end – shavers (thanks, Bugatti).
Musical instruments, though, those are a little rarer. But Lexus is here to buck the “industry trend” by unveiling the “Lexus LC Stratocaster”, made in collaboration with iconic electric guitar manufacturer Fender.
The LC Stratocaster is Fender Custom Shop’s latest magnum opus, created by Principal Master Builder, Ron Thorn. And as the name suggests, it’s inspired by the Lexus LC Coupe/Convertible – or more specifically, the first Inspiration Series model that was unveiled in Japan.
Just like the car, the LC Strat is finished in an omnidirectional Structural Blue paint job, which surprisingly doesn’t feature any blue pigments at all. According to Lexus, the paint job uses multiple layers of colourless materials, all of which come together to reflect and refract light at a specific wavelength which our eyes perceive as the unique blue hue.
The blue body is paired to a 3A flame maple neck, finished in high-gloss urethane to show off a hint of Fender’s woodworking tradition. On the otherside is the Richlite fingerboard, polished in – again – a deep blue colour, complemented by white Luminlay inlays that glow in vivid blue, especially when seen on stage under bright spotlights.
To contrast the deep blue of the Strat’s body, the pick guard is made of twill carbon fibre, matching the Lexus’ rear spoilers, while the fasteners are black-button machine head screws to create a clean “automotive” appearance. Ron Thorn also included custom machined brushed aluminium knobs to match those on the Mark Levinson sound system used in Lexus’ cars.
And for the guitar nerds – the Lexus LC Stratocaster is fitted with Fender’s latest Noiseless Single Coils pickups, and just like the Richlite material on the fingerboard, is used for the first time in a Fender Custom Shop guitar.
“When we saw the first iteration of this Stratocaster, we couldn’t believe how well it matched the original LC 500 Inspiration Series,” said Lexus Vice President of Marketing, Vinay Shahani.
“Seeing our Structural Blue colour represented in this Stratocaster guitar illustrates endless possibilities of creativity, and we’re honoured to have been a part of this creation.”
Just like the Lexus LC Inspiration Series, the Fender Lexus LC Stratocaster is also limited to just 100 units worldwide – at USD6,000 (approx. RM25k) apiece. All units come in a custom case wrapped in carbon fibre textured vinyl, with black leather ends and the Lexus logo embroidered inside.