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The Ibanez Artcore goes upscale with the addition of the Artcore Deluxe AF85VLS. The AF85 full hollow body features flame maple top, back, sides and pickguard as well as pearl and abalone fretboard inlays. "We're taking the Artcore uptown," commented Shogo Hayashi of the Ibanez Electric Guitar Division in Bensalem, PA. "But not too uptown--at $569.99, we're still at a very affordable price point for full and semi-acoustic guitars, especially for one with these deluxe appointments."
At the 2002 Summer NAMM show, Ibanez introduced full and semi-acoustic guitars with list prices of just $399.99 for non-trem models and $459.99 for trem models. "The introduction of the Artcore guitars" commented Hayashi, "was easily one of the most successful series launches in our history. Up till that point, if you wanted a good full or semi-acoustic, with very few exceptions, you had to put out serious money. With Artcore, young players can get the tonal advantages of a good full or semi-acoustic at a price they can afford."
In addition to the introduction of the Artcore Deluxe AF85VLS, two of the original Artcores get dressed up in new finishes, the AS73 semi-acoustic in Transparent Cherry and the TM71 Talman semi in basic Black.