The State-of-the-Art Features Elevating Fender’s American Ultra Series
American Ultra delivers industry firsts, including the only “Modern D” neck for guitar and bass, new body contours and Ultra Noiseless Vintage and Hot pickups for enhanced playability.
By Mike Duffy
For over 70 years, Fender has set the standard for electric guitar design and playability. Now, with the launch of the new American Ultra Series, we’ve raised the bar again.
With sleek modern features, state-of-the-art craftsmanship and nuanced design, the American Ultra Series marks a pivotal moment in Fender history.
“Everything changes and evolves,” said Fender Executive Vice President of Product Justin Norvell. “We’ve always been pushing towards what musicians need today. It speaks to the spirit that goes back to the origins of Fender.
“American Ultra is the next chapter in Fender’s legacy of cutting-edge innovation. American Ultra has truly been decades in the making and is a result of our tireless commitment to meet the needs of today’s working and touring guitar players looking for a modern feel and tone.”
Since 1946, Fender has embraced artist and player feedback as the core driver of its process, leading to continued innovations that are subtle, yet crucial. These thoughtful changes in design and technology can’t always be seen by the naked eye, but are meaningful to artists who crave products that advance with the times.
One of the most noticeable changes is the all-new "Modern D" neck, which boasts a compound-radius fingerboard, smooth Ultra satin back finish and extremely rolled edges. The result is a neck that’s slim and fast, yet ergonomic and comfortable, perfect for blazing solos and easy comping without sacrificing tone and resonance.
Other groundbreaking features include:
New Body Contours
For next level comfort and playability, Fender redesigned the body contours of its most iconic models for the first time in decades. New back body curves offer hours of gigging comfort while a super-sculpted neck heel gives players unparalleled access to the upper register of the fingerboard, resulting in better accessibility and comfort.
“The idea of modifying the body shapes is not one that we take lightly,” said Norvell. “The bodies of the Stratocaster and Telecaster haven’t really been modified or changed in over 30 years. And, you’ve got to retain the essence and spirit of the original instruments.
“You can look at it from the front and say, ‘OK, that’s a Stratocaster and a Telecaster.’ The back, where it actually is worn against your body, that’s the real estate that we chose to make those modifications. All of the sculpting and the contours that we did to these instruments make it more ergonomic and more sculpted to allow you to get up to the higher registers.”
Ultra Noiseless Pickups
American Ultra instruments carry two types of innovative new noiseless pickups: Ultra Noiseless Vintage pickups deliver authentic Fender single-coil sound – without hum. Ultra Noiseless Hot pickups offer modern performance and classic tone so you can launch your amp into overdrive.
With lots of metal, lots of mass and a cool modern look, the HiMass bridge on American Ultra basses delivers serious sustain, precise intonation and rock-solid tuning stability.
Double Tap Humbucker
The American Ultra HSS Strat features a brand-new Double Tap Humbucker with an overwound coil to ensure matched volume between pickups in coil-split mode.
Redesigned Preamp with Active/Passive Switching
A redesigned preamp on American Ultra basses features three bands of active boost/cut for sweeter highs, focused mids and lots more usable bass. For a more traditional tone, the redesigned pickups can also be used in passive mode.
American Ultra instruments are available in a variety of colors, including Cobra Blue, Mocha Burst, Texas Tea, Arctic Pearl, Aged Natural, Plasma Red Burst and Ultraburst.
All American Ultra guitars feature a treble-bleed circuit to preserve high-end response at any volume – plus advanced wiring options that activate different high-performance features depending on the model.
The American Ultra Series consists of seven models – Stratocaster, Stratocaster HSS, Telecaster, Precision Bass, Jazzmaster, Jazz Bass and Jazz Bass V. Each instrument is manufactured at Fender’s factory in Corona, Calif.
Luxurious, sleek and cutting-edge, the American Ultra Series sets a new industry benchmark for precision, performance and feel. There's no doubt that adding one to your collection will take your playing above and beyond.