A barn find is a classic car or motorcycle that has been discovered, often in derelict condition. The term comes from their tendency to be found in places such as barns, sheds, carports and outbuildings where they have been stored for many years. The term usually applies to vehicles that are rare and valuable, and which are consequently of great interest to car collectors and enthusiasts despite their poor condition.
Barn finds can fetch high prices when sold. A 1967 Ferrari 330 GTS spider was sold for US$2.1 million in January 2014. The car had suffered an engine fire in 1969 and had been stored in a garage for 44 years. Despite this, it sold for more than a fully restored example sold in 2013.
In the past, barn find cars were typically subjected to exhaustive restoration, to return them to a condition close to that when they were built. However, the current trend is to treat the cars more sympathetically, to avoid restoration that removes evidence of the car's history and to place greater value on any original features the car retains even if they're in poor condition. In some cases, intense restoration can actually lower a car's value
- In 2014, a collection of 60 derelict cars was found at a farm in Western France. The collection included a Ferrari California Spyder, formerly owned by Alain Delon, that sold for €15.9 million when auctioned in 2015. There were several Talbot Lago T26s, one of which was formerly owned by King Farouk of Egypt. Other cars were built by Bugatti, Hispano-Suiza, Panhard-Levassor, Delahaye and Delage.
- In 2015, five vehicles were sold that had been stored in a barn in Austin, Texas since the 1970's. These included three Cadillacs built between 1932 and 1938, a 1908 REO Model G and a 1923 Milburn Electric Model 27L.
- Sass, Rob (5 May 2014). "The rise of the barn-find collector car". Autoweek. Retrieved 20 December 2014.
- Keno, Leigh; Keno, Leslie (November 2010). "Restoration? Think Twice". kidston.com. Retrieved 20 December 2014.
- "Barn find Ferrari sells for $16 million". Fox News. 6 February 2015. Retrieved 15 October 2015.
- Litchfield, John (18 December 2014). "Hoard of 60 classic cars - including Alain Delon's Ferrari Spyder - discovered on French farm". The Independent. Retrieved 19 December 2014.
- "Five perfectly preserved pre-war automobiles worth $700,000 found frozen in time inside a Texas barn". Daily Mail. 5 May 2015. Retrieved 6 May 2015.