NAMM 2012: Taylor Guitars 2012 Model Lineup Changes

Taylor Guitars unveiled several lineup changes at this week's 2012 Winter NAMM show in Anaheim, California.

Most of the changes involve new aesthetic treatments across much of their acoustic/electric line. They've also added mahogany versions of their baritone and 12-fret models, unveiled a mahogany-top GS Mini and debuted changes to their nylon- and steel-string series.

The integration of the nylon-string models means they’ll share the same appointment package as the steel-string models within each Taylor series, explained Chalise Zolezzi, communications manager at Taylor. The move reflects the natural affinity that Taylor’s modern-day nylon-strings have with steel-string designs, featuring comfortable necks, cutaways and onboard electronics. It also speaks to the growing appeal of the nylon-string sound as an expressive tonal flavor in popular music.

Here are the lineup changes for 2012:

KOA SERIES: Koa/maple Island Vane inlay, single-ring rosewood/blackwood or rosewood/maple rosette and maple or blackwood purfling trim.

700 SERIES: Ivoroid Heritage Diamonds inlay, 3-ring Ivoroid rosette and binding, and Vintage Sunburst top (Englemann spruce standard)

600 SERIES: Pearloid Twisted Ovals inlay with natural finish, Koi Blue color option

500 SERIES: Pearloid DEco Diamonds inlay, faux tortoise shell binding and dark brown stain

400 SERIES: Pearloid Progressive Dots inlay

300 SERIES: 4mm Pearl Dots inlay and new GS models: 316ce, 356ce

200 SERIES: Tobacco Sunburst top (214ce-SB) and all-black (214ce-BLK) models

GS MINI: New mahogany-top model

BABY SERIES: Single-ring black rosette

T3 SERIES: Mini humbucker and vintage alnico pickup options

T5 SERIES: Pearloid Spires inlay (Custom models only)

NYLON LINE: Changing to Acoustic/Electric appointment specs for 200 Series through 900 Series. This change will affect all nylon models. Model naming format will change (example: NS32ce now 312ce-N)

ACOUSTIC LINE: Additional models

  • SPECIALTY SERIES: Mahogany/cedar 12-fret and mahogany/Sitka Baritones
  • “After years of building hybrid nylon-strings that are geared toward the modern steel-string player, we felt that they belong together,” Bob explains. “Now you’ll have a choice of more wood pairings for nylon models.”

Among the new developments for our acoustic/electric models, the most visually striking is the revamped Koa Series, which now showcases an all-wood appointment package to mesh with the natural beauty of Hawaiian koa and its homeland. The centerpiece of the design, created by Taylor luthier Andy Powers, is an elaborate Island Vine fretboard inlay in koa and maple, which features plumeria flowers as position markers within the flowing motif.

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Damian Fanelli
Editor-in-Chief, Guitar World

Damian is Editor-in-Chief of Guitar World magazine. In past lives, he was GW’s managing editor and online managing editor. He's written liner notes for major-label releases, including Stevie Ray Vaughan's 'The Complete Epic Recordings Collection' (Sony Legacy) and has interviewed everyone from Yngwie Malmsteen to Kevin Bacon (with a few memorable Eric Clapton chats thrown into the mix). Damian, a former member of Brooklyn's The Gas House Gorillas, was the sole guitarist in Mister Neutron, a trio that toured the U.S. and released three albums. He now plays in two NYC-area bands.