Fender American Ultra Jazzmaster and Stratocaster HSS review

Fender's flagship US models raise the bar for the electric guitar

Fender American Ultra Stratocaster HSS and Jazzmaster
(Image: © Fender)

Guitar World Verdict

The best instruments to have come off the Fender production line, the American Ultra series combines luxurious playability with a huge variety of incredible tones, each with their own character.


  • +

    Body contours enhance playability and feel.

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    D-profile neck profile is ideal for fast, precise playing.

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    The attention to detail is remarkable.

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    Noiseless pickups.

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    Cool new finishes.


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    Quite pricey.

You can trust Guitar World Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing guitar products so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

It can be an intimidating experience when shopping for a new Fender solidbody electric guitar. There is an overwhelming variety of instruments on offer today. Fender produces about a dozen different series of Stratocaster models alone, with numerous variations within each range. 

It requires a daunting amount of research and legwork to choose from an American Original, American Performer, American Professional II, Deluxe, Player or Roadworn Vintera model, but there is an upside: if you have an ideal Fender guitar in mind, Fender inevitably makes it.

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Chris Gill

Chris is the co-author of Eruption - Conversations with Eddie Van Halen. He is a 40-year music industry veteran who started at Boardwalk Entertainment (Joan Jett, Night Ranger) and Roland US before becoming a guitar journalist in 1991. He has interviewed more than 600 artists, written more than 1,400 product reviews and contributed to Jeff Beck’s Beck 01: Hot Rods and Rock & Roll and Eric Clapton’s Six String Stories.