Barn finds are always fun. Although, this one is quickly getting less fun. A couple of weeks ago, we (and the rest of the internet) covered this barn find horde of 174 classic cars in England. The contents of the massive barn find hit eBay, and buyers and watchers flocked to see the collection’s contents. However, things quickly got weird and mysterious as buyers noticed red flags from the cars and even the mysterious seller. Imagine thinking you were buying a true Porsche 964 and, instead, getting a 1973 Porsche 911.
What’s going on with the barn find vintage car collection in the U.K.?
According to The Drive, some buyers have started sending up red flags to other would-be buyers of some shady and confusing experiences while trying to buy these cars. Buyers are reporting poor communication from the mysterious seller and even canceled sales. Some people are even reporting misrepresented classic cars wearing mismatched license tags and sometimes the wrong badges.
What vintage cars are included in this barn find?
After the Instagram account called London Barn Finds posted pictures of the massive 174-car collection on social media, buyers and classic car nerds everywhere rushed to scroll through the photos of the seemingly endless collection of dusty vintage cars. The seller (or someone connected to the collection) listed each of the cars on eBay, and folks began attempting to buy the cooler and rarer of the horde.
Initial reporting and photos showed what appeared to be some cool stuff like an old Porsche 964, a vintage Mercedes G 500, and a BMW e28 M5. These obviously aren’t bazillion-dollar, super-rare, vintage Ferraris, or anything, but they are desirable and very cool old cars.
Commenters outed the BMW “M5” as just a mere 535i (not nearly as cool). The United Kingdom’s public plate database revealed the Mercedes G500 as the lesser 1988 G 230. And the final, and potentially most expensive mixups, was the Porsche that seemed to be a 964. This classic car is wearing plates from a 1973 Porsche 911. Seeing as how the Porsche 964 didn’t begin production until 1989, that would make it yet another confusing and messy car to buy.
There are still other question marks here
According to the mysterious “local businessman” seller, the entire collection is said to run – all 174 dusty cars. While we neither confirm nor deny this claim, the likelihood of all 174 cars running seems slim.
According to The Drive, many of these classic cars haven’t been registered since the 1990s. Some of the more recent ones were registered last in 2016. More importantly than that, some of these cars are visibly incomplete, missing different bits and bobs. Of course, incomplete cars can still turn over, but paired with the other red flags, many buyers are getting turned off from the barn find horde.
Even with all that, some buyers have remained steadfast, only to be met with more headaches when dealing with the “family friend” who is running point on the vintage car liquidation.
Although the cars were listed on eBay, the seller and his helper allowed people to view the collection in person and make offers on the spot. Even this more direct approach was met with confusion and frustration. At some point in the proceedings, listed cars on eBay disappeared before and even after some people bought them. Social media commenters claimed this was due to one person buying the whole lot.
Even though the seller said that wasn’t true, the cars still got pulled, and sales canceled. As of now, it appears that many of the cars are still for sale. In fairness to the buyer, selling this many vintage cars and clearly, mis-plated cars is probably a serious logistical undertaking.
Maybe there is nothing sketchy happening at all. Maybe the sale is just disorganized and messy as a result. Either way, buyers would be wise to tread lightly and pay close attention.