Driving up PCH from San Diego towards Los Angeles, the BYRD Buggy is the essence of slick. Fellow drivers honk and wave as they pass Chase in the “just right yellow” buggy, confirming what Bruce Meyers (inventor of the Meyers Manx) felt after designing his first buggy prototype in 1964: classic design never goes out of style.
Let’s rewind for a moment...those who know Chase know that his drive and creativity are limitless. BYRD was created on just that, drive and creativity. And for years Chase had the idea of creating a dune buggy that would represent the energy behind BYRD so when the opportunity came knocking to have his very own buggy, it was a no brainer. He looked to the very best, Bruce Meyers himself, to turn the classic 1960 dune buggy dream into a modern reality.
Earlier this year, Chase drove down to San Diego to green light the BYRD Buggy project and spent an unforgettable afternoon with Bruce. Bruce grew up in Southern California and had a love for surfing at a very young age. In the 1950’s he began shaping surfboards for Velzy and other shapers. Bruce first came across the dune buggies in Pismo Beach, where he decided to create a model that was lighter and easier to maneuver on the beach.
In the early ‘60s, Bruce created the very first Meyers Manx buggy at his workshop in Newport Beach. Coincidentally, this now legendary shop is next door to Chase’s family’s office and just blocks from the launching grounds of BYRD (some might call this fate). The first buggy was a modified VW Kombi Bus with a fiberglass monocoque body and a steel frame. Technically a kit car, the fiberglass shell is assembled onto a shortened Volkswagen Beetle chassis. And each fiberglass kit is proudly made by the same company that makes all the California lifeguard towers.
From that first buggy, Meyers Manx was born. It quickly became a dune buggy that was iconic to the surf world; allowing surfers to strap their boards on top and hoot at babes on the beach. So it was only fitting that BYRD, a‘60s surf-inspired lifestyle brand, acquire its very own Manx. Years ago, even Chase’s grandfather owned a blue Meyers Manx so in a way, the BYRD Buggy is keeping a family tradition alive.
After 10 months of wrenching, the BYRD Buggy was ready for its first test drive. Bruce and the Manx team watched as a new generation of SOCAL surfer boys drove off to experience that buggy smile. The buggy has forever tied to the two brands together. It is a piece of Bruce’s past and the future of what is to come for BYRD.