Harley Benton goes for gold with 25th anniversary series of affordable electric guitar and bass models

Harley Benton 25th Anniversary guitar
(Image credit: Harley Benton)

This year marks the 25th anniversary of Harley Benton, and to celebrate, the affordable gear champion has announced a series of stylish, special edition electric guitars and bass guitars that all arrive in a luxurious Firemist colorway.

The drop contains eight instruments – two basses, six electrics – which traverse the
brand’s various categories, from its Stratocaster-inspired ST line and Telecaster-leaning TE range, all the way to the Jazzmaster-esque JA collection.

As always, Harley Benton wears its inspiration unapologetically on its sleeve, giving some of the most classic body shapes a special treatment by way of golden aesthetics and impressive appointments.

Harley Benton 25th Anniversary guitar

Harley Benton ST-25TH (Image credit: Harley Benton)

Leading the way are the previously mentioned Strat, Tele and Jazzmaster copies – the ST-25TH, TE-25TH and JA-25TH – which arrive with fairly similar spec sheets. 

All three have American alder bodies and roasted Canadian flame maple necks, as well as dark laurel fretboards that flash either 22 or 21 stainless steel frets, depending on the model.

Harley Benton 25th Anniversary guitar

Harley Benton TE-25TH (Image credit: Harley Benton)

The bolt-on neck in each occasion features a D profile and 12” radius ‘board, with the trio all flashing an assortment of single-coil Roswell pickups. Notably, the Strat also features an alnico 5 Hotrail in the bridge position.

There are no surprises in the control and hardware departments, with the Tele opting for a Wilkinson WTB bridge while the other two flash Sung-II alternatives relevant to their builds.

Harley Benton 25th Anniversary guitar

Harley Benton JA-25TH (Image credit: Harley Benton)

Price-wise, the TE is the cheapest of the bunch at $294, while the ST and JA are available for $326 and $315, respectively.

Super-Strat and -Tele iterations are also on the menu with slightly altered templates. Both the HSS-configured Fusion-III 25TH and HH Fusion-T 25TH feature Nyatoh bodies, and opt for Canadian roasted maple necks to match the neck. Elsewhere, the former features 24 stainless steel frets, while the latter has 22.

Harley Benton 25th Anniversary guitar

Harley Benton Fusion-T 25TH (Image credit: Harley Benton)

Both also have GraphTech TUSQ nuts, a 12” ‘board radius and Wilkinson’s 50IIK two-point tremolo bridge.

Unsurprisingly, these amped-up axes are slightly pricer, weighing in at $490 each.

Harley Benton 25th Anniversary guitar

Harley Benton Fusion-III 25TH (Image credit: Harley Benton)

The final electric guitar – the SC-25TH – looks to be another Harley Benton Goldtop copy, flashing an unmistakably Les Paul-flavored body shape composed from okoume and maple. Again, the roasted maple neck and laurel fretboard combo makes the cut, with an identical D profile returning to the lineup.

Other notable appointments include trapezoid-shaped inlays, 22 steel frets and a graphite nut, as well as a classic Les Paul hardware combo comprising a TOM-01 tune-o-matic bridge and stopbar tailpiece.

Harley Benton 25th Anniversary guitar

Harley Benton SC-25TH (Image credit: Harley Benton)

Two Roswell LAF humbuckers are in charge of tone, and offer a coil-splitting option by way of push-pull tone pots.

Strangely, this model isn't currently listed on Benton distributor Thomann's website, but similarly spec'd models go for around $300, so expect the SC-25TH to cost something around that ballpark.

To cap off the 25th anniversary collection, Harley Benton has unveiled two bass models, the JB-25TH and Enhanced 25TH. Both feature alder bodies and roasted maple necks, though that’s where the similarities end.

Harley Benton 25th Anniversary guitar

Harley Benton JB-25TH (Image credit: Harley Benton)

The Jazz Bass-inspired JB-25TH makes use of a D-shape neck profile and graphite nut, as well as a laurel fretboard with 20 stainless steel frets. It also utilizes a Wilkinson WBBC bridge with brass saddles and engraved deluxe tuners.

Its Precision Bass-flavored peer instead offers a roasted maple fretboard with black block inlays, a Black TUSQ XL nut, a slightly flatter 14” fingerboard radius – as opposed to 12” – and a WSC SK4 bridge.

Harley Benton 25th Anniversary guitar

Harley Benton Enhanced 25TH (Image credit: Harley Benton)

While the JB carrie a price tag of $326, the Enhanced is available for $545.

To find out more about each 25th anniversary model, head over to Harley Benton.

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Matt Owen

Matt is a Staff Writer, writing for Guitar World, Guitarist and Total Guitar. He has a Masters in the guitar, a degree in history, and has spent the last 16 years playing everything from blues and jazz to indie and pop. When he’s not combining his passion for writing and music during his day job, Matt records for a number of UK-based bands and songwriters as a session musician.