Ever wonder how a Cadillac-drivin’ guy from Chicago invented one of the hottest categories in automotive aftermarket accessories, so popular in fact, that it led to the creation of one of the most dynamic companies in the industry where the company name became synonymous with its product that transformed off-roading forever? Well, wonder no more! Buckle in for a great story about the fantastic ride that is Bushwacker, Inc.!
Back in 1967, Jerry Logan, the Cadillac-drivin’ guy from Chicago, who was also an avid off-road enthusiast, was living in Portland, OR and working at an engineering company. While enjoying time off-roading, he realized that he and other off-road enthusiasts were incurring unnecessary fines because the oversized tires on their vehicles extended past their fenders. At the time, there was nothing to cover such tires and he wasn’t about to give up his passion for off-roading so Jerry came up with a concept to provide the tire coverage he and his friends needed: welcome to the birth of the Fender Flare!
Jerry proposed his Fender Flare concept to the engineering company where he worked, but they dismissed the idea as too niche. Undaunted, and convinced that his concept would be well received by the off-road audience, Jerry decided he’d bring his concept to life and create Fender Flares on his own. He left his job at the engineering company and began to work on the first designs out of a garage in Camas, WA.
In February 1968, with two friends, Jerry established L.T.D. Enterprises, Inc. The name represented the first initial of each of their last names. Jerry was elected President of this newly formed business offering Fender Flares for the Ford Bronco and Jeep CJ6. To get the word out about this new and necessary invention, he loaded up his station wagon and set out to promote his innovative product. Like a true pioneer, Jerry served as designer, engineer, and sales manager.
By the end of the second year, the two partners had developed other interests and Jerry ended up as sole owner of L.T. D. Enterprises, Inc. Despite that change, which could have crippled many other young businesses, Jerry’s passion for his innovative product and the benefits it provided to the off-road community, rapidly propelled L.T.D. Enterprises, Inc. to become the leading manufacturer of Fender Flares for light trucks and sport utility vehicles.
The growth of the business and excitement for the Fender Flares enticed Jerry’s younger brother, John, to leave Chicago in the early 70s and join him in OR. He asked Jerry ‘What the hell is an LTD besides a car?’ Then added ‘You’re making parts for off-road vehicles!’ and with that, they decided to change the name of the company to better represent what they were doing and the Bushwacker brand was born!
Given their success with the Fender Flares, and Jerry’s love for creating products that solved problems, they decided to expand into other product categories. Bushwacker began making and offering grille guards, traction bars, skid plates, suspension systems and more…but when the gas crunch of the 70s hit the off-road community hard, and insurance costs rose 500% when insurance companies became skittish about anything that had to do with suspension, it took a toll on the business. It was 1985 when Bushwacker, Inc. was able to achieve the level of success it had enjoyed prior to the late 70s.
While navigating the changing landscape of the economy and the industry, Jerry thought about the poolside scene he had seen when watching the movie “The Graduate.” In that scene, the graduate was given advice about plastics. That scene and advise stuck with him and he liked the idea so much so that he decided to just concentrate on plastics. Jerry ceased production of everything that wasn’t plastic and the rest, as they say, is history!
Now, more than 50 years since its founding, Bushwacker, Inc remains true to its mainstay product, the Fender Flares, and has created complementary products such as Bedrail Caps, Bumper Protection and the award-winning Trail Armor product line-up. Bushwacker, Inc is now a well-known and highly regarded brand in the automotive aftermarket, where the term “Bushwackers” can frequently be heard referring to Fender Flares.
Our pocket-style flare, created for Jeeps in 1999, set the industry on fire with its distinctive look that could be installed without drilling into the vehicle’s frame! It was soon followed by applications for trucks. And while we’ve created a range of fender flare styles, including options color matched to your vehicle, it’s the strong, bold, ‘bolt-on’ look of our Bushwacker pocket-style fender flare that remains the highly desired standard for vehicle tire coverage and body protection for nearly two decades now. Talk about standing the test of time!
As a family owned and operated business for over 45 years, and a member of the Lund International family of brands since early 2015, Bushwacker, Inc strives to maintain the honest values of doing things right. We’re rooted in automotive passion, and maintain an enthusiast’s drive. We love this industry and our customers and listen to what they have to say because we delight in creating products to improve their experience and help them have more fun, whether on, or off, road!
We proudly design, invent and manufacture our products in the USA, providing jobs to Americans, and we so believe in them, that we back them with a limited lifetime warranty. We give back to our industry and the community in which we do business through our support of off-road related and local organizations...and all of this is possible because Jerry Logan decided to take a bold step into the unknown, which is what it truly means to be a Bushwacker! #WITS