HomeNews and EventsPreserved ‘barn find’ 1959 BMW 507 set for Gooding auction in Florida

Preserved ‘barn find’ 1959 BMW 507 set for Gooding auction in Florida

Showing ‘charismatic patina,’ the roadster is still intact after decades of storage


A remarkably well-preserved 1959 BMW 507 roadster, a proverbial “barn-find” that was parked for decades by its original owner, will be offered by Gooding & Company during its Amelia Island Auction on March 4.

With an estimated pre-auction value of $2 million to $2.4 million, the BMW is an exceedingly rare unrestored 507, aside from a long-ago repaint in original Black – just 15 of the stylish sports cars were finished in black by the factory, out of the 254 produced.

The 507 also has its original red-leather interior, which also appears to be amazingly intact, and comes with its factory-equipped fitted hardtop.  

“The 1959 BMW 507 Series II presented here is one of the most exciting automotive discoveries in recent memory as an unrestored sports car that has been parked for decades in the garage of its original owner,” Gooding says in its catalog description. 

“Recently acquired by the consignor, this 507 is an incredible find, and remains unrestored, save for an older repaint, in largely original order, possessing a fantastic, charismatic patina. Considering its rare factory color scheme and six decades spent in the hands of its original owner, this 507 is a deserving candidate for either a concours-quality restoration, or a sympathetic mechanical recommissioning.”

The BMW 507 was a gorgeous post-war tour de force by the German automaker, still recovering from the ravages of World War II.  Produced from 1956 through 1959, the 507 was originally intended for mass export in the thousands to US drivers, but the high showroom cost dulled enthusiasm for the sports cars, no matter how attractive or refined, and just over 250 were ever sold. 

One of the most celebrated owners was Elvis Presley, who owned a 507 while stationed in Germany while deployed with the US Army, and later purchased another one.

Part of the high expense for the BMW was its almost entirely hand-formed aluminum body, which was costly and time-consuming to produce.  The 507 was powered by a 3.2-liter 16-valve V8 engine that produced about 150 horsepower.

These cars have found an eager audience among today’s car collectors, admired for its evocative styling, German engineering and drivability on rallies and tours. 

“Significant 1950s sports cars in this condition do not come along very often, and with the passing years, it is increasingly unlikely that further unrestored 507s will be found,” the Gooding catalog notes. “As one of the most iconic, beautiful and desirable European sports cars of its era, and undoubtedly the most important postwar BMW sports car, this unrestored 507 offers interested collectors the chance of a lifetime.”

Gooding’s auction on Amelia Island takes place March 4 at the Omni Resort during the northeast Florida celebration of collector vehicles, highlighted by the famed concours d’elegance recently renamed The Amelia, which takes place Sunday, March 6. 

For more information about the Gooding sale, visit the auction website.

Bob Golfen
Bob Golfen
Bob Golfen is a longtime automotive writer and editor, focusing on new vehicles, collector cars, car culture and the automotive lifestyle. He is the former automotive writer and editor for The Arizona Republic and SPEED.com, the website for the SPEED motorsports channel. He has written free-lance articles for a number of publications, including Autoweek, The New York Times and Barrett-Jackson auction catalogs. A collector car enthusiast with a wide range of knowledge about the old cars that we all love and desire, Bob enjoys tinkering with archaic machinery. His current obsession is a 1962 Porsche 356 Super coupe.



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