The Auerswald Model C is an electric guitar used by Prince in the late 1980s and early 1990s. It was built by the luthier Jerry Auerswald, who also built the Symbol guitar and Cleo bass. It has a bar connecting the body to the headstock, called a "sustain bow" - like the Roland G-707, also used by Prince. The tuning mechanism is incorporated into the bridge and the guitar has a humbucker and single coil, all positioned near to the bridge.
Prince was given his first Model C by Gloria von Thurn und Taxis in 1986. A second was acquired later.
It appears on the Lovesexy, Batman and Graffiti Bridge albums, and appeared on the Lovesexy and Nude tours. It may have also been used on the Sign O The Times album and tour. The riff to the song Rave Un2 The Joy Fantastic was recorded on a Model C, played through a Leslie speaker (recorded in 1988 but released in 1999 on the album of the same name).
The Model C was not used after the Nude tour, but one survives. It is in the collection at Paisley Park and appears in the Prince - Guitar & Bass book. It has been exhibited at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
It’s made of one piece of wood—and doesn’t have much guts—but if you crank it, it sounds like a car is running over it!