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Fender Highway One Stratocaster Electric Guitar  

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    Fender

    Vintage styling and modern functionality in the most affordable U.S.-made Strat.

    The American-made Fender Highway One Stratocaster is ready for the open road. Wide '70s headstock, fat frets, scorching alnico pickups, upgraded vintage-style bridge, and super-light nitro satin finish make this electric guitar a real hot rod. Also features an alder body, C-shaped maple neck, and Greasebucket tone circuit.

    Check the drop-down menu to the right to select colors and/or other options.

    Features
    • Alder body
    • C-shaped maple neck
    • Rosewood or maple fretboard
    • 3 single-coil pickups with Alnico III magnets
    • Reverse-wound, reverse-polarity middle pickup

    Order now and play a real U.S. Strat for a lot less bread!

     
    Customer Reviews
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    Review Snapshot®

    by PowerReviews
    FenderHighway One Stratocaster Electric Guitar
     
    4.7

    (based on 130 reviews)

    Ratings Distribution

    • 5 Stars

       

      (105)

    • 4 Stars

       

      (20)

    • 3 Stars

       

      (2)

    • 2 Stars

       

      (2)

    • 1 Stars

       

      (1)

    Most Liked Positive Review

     

    Glad My Baby's Back!

    There - I gave it a 10. I know lots of people want an unbiased rating, but I LOVE this guitar. I was laid off last year for a while, like a lot...Read complete review

    There - I gave it a 10. I know lots of people want an unbiased rating, but I LOVE this guitar. I was laid off last year for a while, like a lot of folks. I sold about 5 guitars including the first Highway One that I had. Ya gotta do what ya gotta do. Fortunately, I returned to work after a few months and started rebuilding my guitar collection. I replaced my strat with a couple of American Standard Strats and bought a really nice Les Paul. I kept telling myself that the American Standards were more expensive and, therefore," better than my Highway One. I finally quit lying to myself and sold the Standards and replaced the Highway One. Everyone has their own definition ""good tone"". To me this Highway One is good tone. It isn't exactly ""vintage"" although you CAN get there by playing with your amp settings. What this was made for", however, is unabashed high gain, balls to the wall electric blues and hard rock. Think SRV, Robin Trower, Kenny Wayne Shepherd. That's my definition of tone.
    I had to sell my original Highway One last year. Thank God I've got a new one! The features may be basic, but these Highway Ones are the best sounding Strats that I've owned (and I've had 8 others over the years).

    OK, so it's only a satin finish with no lacquer. It comes in only 2 finishes now (black & sunburst). Hey Fender - you may want to phase these out, but can't you have some nice colors like you used to have? Come on...

    This guitar does have the greasebucket tone circuit which doesn't add bass if you want to darken the treble a bit and that works well. Other than that, there's no hardshell case," just a ""deluxe"" gig bag. But my new baby is going in an American Standard SKB case that I've got lying around. She's well worth it.
    Haven't found a flaw in it and having owned one before I knew what to expect. The frets & fret edges are perfect. It was set up great out of the box", although I will need to change the strings. Why does Fender ALWAYS put wimpy 9's on their new guitars? At least Gibson uses 10's.
    If you want one of these, you better hurry. They're worth it... I recently talked to a Fender sales rep here in West Michigan. He told me that Fender would keep making them as long as people (like me) want to buy them. He also said that the company thought that the American Special series would cannibalize the demand and these would phase out. They were surprised by the demand that still exists. Sure the American Specials look nice and have a lacquer finish, but the Highway One satin grows on you and after all - isn't about tone? The greasebucket tone circuit matched with the Highway One pickups is a match made in heaven. The American Special Strats have Texas Specials which many love, but I DO NOT. Too brittle for me. The Alnico 3's in the Highway One are smooth, but with bite and they are YUMMY with high gain. You can't get these pickups in any other Fender and alnico 3's are hard to come by from any pickup maker - I've looked. So... my theory is that the folks that love the tone of these Highway One's will be awfully disappointed if & when they stop making them.

    VS

    Most Liked Negative Review

     

    The BEST American Stratocaster in a very LONG time!

    I've owned 4 of the first issue Highway One's which I believe were just a bit nicer than this edition because it had the traditional head-stock and spaghetti logo. But this one is not...Read complete review

    I've owned 4 of the first issue Highway One's which I believe were just a bit nicer than this edition because it had the traditional head-stock and spaghetti logo. But this one is not so bad with the 70's style headstock and logo. My favorite feature has to be the Lacquer finnish. This is what Fender used in their vintage models back in the 50's and 60's and this is where a good portion of the great tone those vintage guitars had came from. Lacquer allows the wood to breathe, expand, and contract with ease. Lacquer doesn't tighten the wood and it permits more vibration resulting in more resonance and sustain plus a slightly darker tone but with good definition. This guitar is like a "best of both worlds" uniting features from vintage Strats and modern Strats. For example, 9.5 radius on the finger board, medium jumbo frets, die cast tuners, and 22 frets reflect its modern aspects, but the vintage style bridge, lacquer painted body, and electronics are certainly vintage. I also love the fact that when these guitars get punished they look great. I had a sunburst Highway One that I played and abused so much that my sweat peeled off the paint in the arm rest section of the body, and the extreme abuse and road used scratched and dented it so much that all the guitar players in the audience would drool thinking I had a '62. They look awesome all scratched, dented, and peeled. I wish I still had them but unfortunate economic events caused the sale of 3 of them and the 4th one I smashed to pieces during a pumped up show. I'm considering buying one of these new ones soon. I blew my money on an American Deluxe Ash Stratocaster only to find that the Highway Ones are so much better. As soon as I sell it, I'm buying a Highway One for sure... I want a black one with a maple neck (like Blackie). And speaking of ash bodies, I wish Fender would make a FSR ASH body Highway One like they did with the old Highway One Telecaster Texas model. I love ash bodies. Oh, by the way, these pick-ups aren't the best for this guitar. For a true vintage sound try some '69's or if you want a "best of both worlds" sound go for the Vintage Noiseless. It's the only mod you'll ever have to do to it and it will still cost less and sound better than an American Standard.

    Reviewed by 130 customers

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    (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    6 years and still going strong

    By jdennis27

    from SLC, UT

    Comments about Fender Highway One Stratocaster Electric Guitar:

    I've had mine for 6 years now, and it is still treating me right. It sounds great, can take a beating and still sound amazing, and did I mention that this is a strat? Pick one up while you still can, the highway one series was discontinued last year, so new models will start to become a scarcity pretty soon.
    I love my Highway One strat. I bought it new in 2006, the year they updated it and made it a whole lot better than previous models. I love the 70s headstock and the tone you can get out of this guitar without any adjustments or modifications.
    The only problem is that this guitar does not handle abuse very well. What I mean by that is that the body will get dinged up and chipped almost instantly, despite the precautions you'll take. That was my experience anyway. But let's face it, strats look better with a little bit of a worn look anyways, so it's not that big a deal. Everything about the construction and performance of the guitar shows the quality that American made Fenders have--it is truly top-notch and you won't get a better deal with any other guitar.
    The bang for the buck is incredible. An American made guitar at a great price.

    Comment on this review

    (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    Highway One 3 Tone Sunberst

    Comments about Fender Highway One Stratocaster Electric Guitar:

    Quality and looks plus value. Everyone likes there own setup.
    I think it is a great Guitar.
    Very good looking and sounds great. I love the pickups but, the factory setup wasn't great
    the string action was too high but an easy fix. I really like the guitar though.
    Over all quality was good. didn't see any bad parts or miss assembly.
    Great value an American Strat for the price.

    Comment on this review

    (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Best Guitar for the $$$

    By Chuck Hughes

    from Arkansas

    Comments about Fender Highway One Stratocaster Electric Guitar:

    Great!
    Just bought this guitar from Musician's Friend. Got it about 4 days ago and have been playing it ever since. I have always been a Gibson guy when it comes to electrics and have owned a 335 and currently have a Les Paul that I love. This guitar is different altogether from the Gibsons as it should be. I love the tone and it is exactly the sound I was looking for. I was inspired after listening to SRV again after many years and Eric Clapton and other blues greats and decided I had to have a Fender Strat. I love the finish and the neck and the jumbo frets. The pickups sound fine to me. I have heard others say they changed them out but I don't think that's necessary at all. I especially like the fact that it is made in America although I understand that the pups are from Mexico. It's a beautiful instrument and the pictures don't really do it justice as others have already stated. The neck is perfect and I love the headstock. No issues with the nut so far. The tuners are fine as well. It's actually better than I expected overall. I also have a 74' Fender Jazz base that is the best bass I've ever played. Great guitar and you can't beat the price.

    I am a professional musician and have been for over 35 years if that matters and I'm playing the guitar through a VOX Valvetronic 50 watt combo but it also sounds great through my Acoustic AG60. I think it would sound great if you ran it through a toaster oven. Go for it!!!

    Comment on this review

    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    It will stay with me forever

    By Trevor Sliziak

    from Surrey, British Columbia

    Comments about Fender Highway One Stratocaster Electric Guitar:

    Apart from the frets wearing down so easily, and the slight mud in the pickups, this guitar is perfect. The finish is beautiful, the neck is comfy, the sound is great for all styles, and you could play it for hours with no problems. Once you buy one of these, they will last the test of time. I love mine to death, and it will always keep surprising me with new sounds and new learning experiences.
    It's got everything you need to make almost every sound imaginable. Not a really big fan of the larger headstock, but I can definately live with it. The nitro finish is one of the main reasons I picked the Highway over the American Standard. The American I played was a bit brighter and clearer sounding (it had a maple neck compared to the rosewood one on the HW I eventually bought), but I think a pickup change can fix that. The nitro finish is easy to scratch, chip, and ding, but I wouldn't have it any other way. The neck is very comfortable after you've played it for a couple months.
    I've owned my 2009 HW for 2 years now, and it's holding up for now. I believe Fender used cheaper frets on these models, because the frets on mine are wearing down at an alarming rate. However, I have been playing my strat 24/7 ever since I got it, so maybe it isn't the frets but my own rigorous playing rates. I will most likely get it refretted with stainless steel rather than just getting the frets levelled. The pickups are a bit muddy, but VERY nice nonetheless. The rest of the guitar is still functioning 100%.
    Being 16 when I bought the guitar brand new, and spending my entire life savings on it, the price was a bit more than I think it should have been. But, I still got a guitar that will stay with me for the rest of my life, so I guess the sacfrifice was worth it.

    Comment on this review

    (4 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Made to be Number One on the Highway

    Comments about Fender Highway One Stratocaster Electric Guitar:

    I've owned lots of guitars. Les Pauls, Ibanez shredders, other Strats...and this is the only guitar I'll play. If someone stole it, I would weep for three weeks and then give up playing guitar because I'll never find another model I love so much.

    The bridge pickup should probably be swapped out, but otherwise, I wouldn't change a thing about my Strat.
    Let's be honest: This is a Strat. We all know what a Strat ought to be, and this guitar does not fall short. Three single-coils, a tune-trouble bridge and a smooth neck built for blues.
    This guitar wasn't made to withstand punishment. If you bang it into something, it dents easily. If you play it often, the paint peels easily. But luckily, as with most Strats, this guitar looks better with a little punishment. No, it won't look perfect forever...which is perfect.
    I took my Honey Blonde, rosewood-neck Strat to the shop for a setup, and the tech who had been playing his whole life said he's never heard a Strat with such a great tone. I've made some upgrades: A Seymour Duncan hot rails in the bridge and a red tortoise shell pickguard.

    This was Fender's budget American guitar, but they accidently stumbled into the perfect workhorse guitar that can get banged up and abused, but still sound like a quality Strat.

    Comment on this review

     
    5.0

    A Great American Strat

    By Paul Johnston

    from Oregon

    Comments about Fender Highway One Stratocaster Electric Guitar:

    This is the best American strat you can start with. Even stock as is, it's a great guitar. With a little bit of money I was able to get a vintage looking/sounding/feeling American strat. My guitar technician did some fret work on it (in a process I call 'butterization'), and the neck plays like butter, like its been played for many years. I'm very satisfied with this guitar, and I play it more than my Gibson SG or other guitars. The gig bag is silly; put this baby in a hardshell case.
    Finish: The satin nitrocellulose finish is absolutely beautiful. I've got a 2011 3-tone sunburst, and I put a black pickguard, knobs, etc., on it for that 70's look. The depth of the color seems to be light-sensitive: in direct light or sunlight, this thing shines and each tone is more brilliant. But it seems darker in less light (in contrast to the American Standard 3-tone, which seems to be always 'locked in' as darker because of its urethane finish).
    Neck: The satin maple neck is super smooth and feels great (much better than the glossy front on the American Standard), though you will want to get a fret dress to lower those jumbo frets.
    Pickups: the stock pickups are not bad, but they seem to be geared toward high-gain applications. I prefer a more vintage sound so I put Custom Shop Texas Specials in it, and it sounds great, like what I expected.
    Greasebucket Tone Control: this is a great feature to decrease the bite of the bridge pickup when necessary, without adding bass or muffling the tone.
    Overall great quality for the price, but I couldn't give it a full 10 because I was a little disappointed in the tremolo spring tension the way it comes. When you do a cliche blues bend of one string while plucking another string, the non-bended string will go noticeably flat. This was because the bridge/tailpiece was too loose (the 3 tremolo springs in the back were not strong enough). So my guitar technician added 2 more Fender springs, and also adjusted the tremolo to make it stiffer (I don't use the tremolo bar any way), so that fixed it. Other than that, very solid American quality.
    This is the best American strat deal you can get. Most folks will put a little money into a strat to get it the way you want it any way, so why not start with the lowest price American you can get. By the time you put some money into a good setup, maybe some fret work and/or different pickups, you are close to the American Standard in price. Fender doesn't seem to push these particular models any more, but it is the best deal you can get, so get it while you still can.

    Comment on this review

    (2 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

     
    1.0

    The BEST American Stratocaster in a very LONG time!

    Comments about Fender Highway One Stratocaster Electric Guitar:

    I've owned 4 of the first issue Highway One's which I believe were just a bit nicer than this edition because it had the traditional head-stock and spaghetti logo. But this one is not so bad with the 70's style headstock and logo. My favorite feature has to be the Lacquer finnish. This is what Fender used in their vintage models back in the 50's and 60's and this is where a good portion of the great tone those vintage guitars had came from. Lacquer allows the wood to breathe, expand, and contract with ease. Lacquer doesn't tighten the wood and it permits more vibration resulting in more resonance and sustain plus a slightly darker tone but with good definition. This guitar is like a "best of both worlds" uniting features from vintage Strats and modern Strats. For example, 9.5 radius on the finger board, medium jumbo frets, die cast tuners, and 22 frets reflect its modern aspects, but the vintage style bridge, lacquer painted body, and electronics are certainly vintage. I also love the fact that when these guitars get punished they look great. I had a sunburst Highway One that I played and abused so much that my sweat peeled off the paint in the arm rest section of the body, and the extreme abuse and road used scratched and dented it so much that all the guitar players in the audience would drool thinking I had a '62. They look awesome all scratched, dented, and peeled. I wish I still had them but unfortunate economic events caused the sale of 3 of them and the 4th one I smashed to pieces during a pumped up show. I'm considering buying one of these new ones soon. I blew my money on an American Deluxe Ash Stratocaster only to find that the Highway Ones are so much better. As soon as I sell it, I'm buying a Highway One for sure... I want a black one with a maple neck (like Blackie). And speaking of ash bodies, I wish Fender would make a FSR ASH body Highway One like they did with the old Highway One Telecaster Texas model. I love ash bodies. Oh, by the way, these pick-ups aren't the best for this guitar. For a true vintage sound try some '69's or if you want a "best of both worlds" sound go for the Vintage Noiseless. It's the only mod you'll ever have to do to it and it will still cost less and sound better than an American Standard.

    Comment on this review

    (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Save $ on this axe, then dime your amp.

    By Jon Serp

    from Charleston

    Comments about Fender Highway One Stratocaster Electric Guitar:

    Great guitar, overall. Mine is a burst, and the color looks nice. I love the nitro finish. I wasn't a big fan of the pickups though, so I swapped them out for some '69's. I also upgraded to locking tuners. The fretboard plays great, gotta love those jumbo frets. My only dislikes are the stock pickups, the neck color (mine looks a bit washed out and cheap, but who cares really???), and stock tuners.ONE THING THAT IS IMPORTANT. You gotta play this thing through a decent amp. It sounds like garbage through my practice amp. But through the Marshall 1/2 Stack, or the Vox AC 30, it sounds golden. So if you're looking for a great guitar, buy this one. Get a good set up, then use the rest of your $$$ to dime your amp.
    The damn back plate has made it IMPOSSIBLE to restring unless you take it off and leave it off.

    Comment on this review

    (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    Glad My Baby's Back!

    Comments about Fender Highway One Stratocaster Electric Guitar:

    There - I gave it a 10. I know lots of people want an unbiased rating, but I LOVE this guitar. I was laid off last year for a while, like a lot of folks. I sold about 5 guitars including the first Highway One that I had. Ya gotta do what ya gotta do. Fortunately, I returned to work after a few months and started rebuilding my guitar collection. I replaced my strat with a couple of American Standard Strats and bought a really nice Les Paul. I kept telling myself that the American Standards were more expensive and, therefore," better than my Highway One. I finally quit lying to myself and sold the Standards and replaced the Highway One. Everyone has their own definition ""good tone"". To me this Highway One is good tone. It isn't exactly ""vintage"" although you CAN get there by playing with your amp settings. What this was made for", however, is unabashed high gain, balls to the wall electric blues and hard rock. Think SRV, Robin Trower, Kenny Wayne Shepherd. That's my definition of tone.
    I had to sell my original Highway One last year. Thank God I've got a new one! The features may be basic, but these Highway Ones are the best sounding Strats that I've owned (and I've had 8 others over the years).

    OK, so it's only a satin finish with no lacquer. It comes in only 2 finishes now (black & sunburst). Hey Fender - you may want to phase these out, but can't you have some nice colors like you used to have? Come on...

    This guitar does have the greasebucket tone circuit which doesn't add bass if you want to darken the treble a bit and that works well. Other than that, there's no hardshell case," just a ""deluxe"" gig bag. But my new baby is going in an American Standard SKB case that I've got lying around. She's well worth it.
    Haven't found a flaw in it and having owned one before I knew what to expect. The frets & fret edges are perfect. It was set up great out of the box", although I will need to change the strings. Why does Fender ALWAYS put wimpy 9's on their new guitars? At least Gibson uses 10's.
    If you want one of these, you better hurry. They're worth it... I recently talked to a Fender sales rep here in West Michigan. He told me that Fender would keep making them as long as people (like me) want to buy them. He also said that the company thought that the American Special series would cannibalize the demand and these would phase out. They were surprised by the demand that still exists. Sure the American Specials look nice and have a lacquer finish, but the Highway One satin grows on you and after all - isn't about tone? The greasebucket tone circuit matched with the Highway One pickups is a match made in heaven. The American Special Strats have Texas Specials which many love, but I DO NOT. Too brittle for me. The Alnico 3's in the Highway One are smooth, but with bite and they are YUMMY with high gain. You can't get these pickups in any other Fender and alnico 3's are hard to come by from any pickup maker - I've looked. So... my theory is that the folks that love the tone of these Highway One's will be awfully disappointed if & when they stop making them.

    Comment on this review

    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Excelent Eletric Guitar

    By Highway One Stratocaster

    from Rio de Janeiro

    Comments about Fender Highway One Stratocaster Electric Guitar:

    I' ve two highway one stratocaster, and I'm very happy.These guitars are a excelent option to play rock/blues/metal.The sound is great!

    Comment on this review

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