For me it would definitely be 'boutique' even if used, although $2500 would get you pretty close to new for a basic S-style from the one 'boutique' builder I am pretty familiar with (caveat is that I haven't really paid attention to prices since 2020 or so).
Just haven't bonded with any Fender-made instrument I've had the chance to play, and stainless frets is a must-have for me (probably defective technique, but I wear traditional frets down in no time). I also like thermally-treated (aka 'roasted') necks now that I've had a couple for a few years. That and SS frets means less ongoing maintenance and I'm fundamentally lazy when it comes to that stuff.
Disclaimer is that I tend to be a brand loyalist when I find something I like, so unless I found an exceptional deal on an exceptional instrument, I really wouldn't consider Fender if I was actively looking for another strat clone.