A matching pair of high-performance American icons, a 1969 Ford Mustang resto-mod and a custom-built Fender Stratocaster guitar, have been created by Barrett-Jackson Builds and the Fender Custom Shop, both based in Scottsdale, Arizona.
The gloss-black Mustang and Stratocaster represent the first partnership between the custom-build divisions of Barrett-Jackson collector car auctioneers and the Fender guitar company, with more collaborations to come, according to a Barrett-Jackson news release.
The matched set, which includes a Fender Tone Master Deluxe Reverb amplifier custom fitted to the Mustang’s trunk, will be auctioned at no reserve during Barrett-Jackson’s annual flagship Scottsdale sale held March 20-27. The auction was postponed from its usual January dates because of coronavirus.
“We’re excited to begin this project with Fender,” Craig Jackson, chief executive of Barrett-Jackson, said in the release. “For years, Fender guitars and muscle cars were the soundtrack of American culture, and this project presents a wonderful opportunity to pay homage to that time and showcase the spectacular skills of the Fender Custom Shop and the Barrett-Jackson Builds team.”
The one-off guitar, built by Fender’s Custom Shop director and principal master builder Ron Thorn, is named the Fender Custom ’69 Stratocaster, and which Thorn calls a resto-mod version of a 1969 Stratocaster using modern high-performance components, refined styling and aggressive tones.
“This collaboration combines my top two passions in life – Fender guitars and high-performance cars,” Thorn said. “Stratocasters and fastbacks have long been two iconic symbols of high performance. They are loud, but also classic icons with beautiful lines.”
The alder body shape and maple neck remain the same, the news release says, but Thorn deleted the pickguard and rear-loaded the knobs and push-button switching for a more modern and aggressive look. Letters spelling out MUSTANG are inlaid in sterling silver on the guitar’s fretboard, and the three humbucking pickups are housed in custom covers made from ’69 Mustang side-marker lights.
The tremolo arm is machined to match the turn-signal stalk of the Mustang, and the electronic control knobs for volume and tone and the pickup selector were made to match the Mustang’s radio controls.
The Mustang is thoroughly modern under its vintage sheet metal, powered by a BluePrint Engines V8 stroked to 347 cubic inches and dyno’d at 419 horsepower and 436 pound-feet of torque, linked with an automatic transmission and 9-inch posi rear. Brakes, steering, suspension and other component also have been upgraded with performance gear.
The Barrett-Jackson Builds team includes two veterans of the TV series “Fast N’ Loud,” Jason Aker, a famed Mustang builder who has worked with Craig Jackson in restorations, and Tony Cano for fabrication and painting. Also on the team is Barrett-Jackson vehicle logistics manager Jeff Catlin.
This Mustang-Stratocaster project launches a digital series called “Barrett-Jackson Builds,” featuring collector car restoration videos that document car builds and the craft people who make it happen.
“From concept to completion and auction, the 1969 Ford Mustang Resto-Mod will be fully documented in a 10-episode Barrett Jackson Builds video series that is now streaming on Barrett-Jackson’s YouTube channel,” the release says.