Holy Barn Find! A BMW M1 Was Hiding In A Garage For 34 Years

German BMW dealer and specialist Mint Classics has discovered an incredible 1981 BMW M1 barn find which has been collecting dust for the last 34 years.

Mint Classics says that the M1 was left to rot in an Italian garage and hasn’t been touched since 1982. It is still fitted with the mid-engined supercar’s original tires manufactured in 1980 and has just 7,392 km on the clock – that’s just 4,593 miles!.

As the images show, the bright red M1 was discovered with miscellaneous bits of rubbish strewn across its once-pristine exterior. It was also covered in a thick layer of dust both inside and out yet still looks to be in quite good condition.

Mint Classics says that it intends on returning the M1 to its original condition and based on the available information, that might not be too difficult. With an expert detail, the exterior and interior could easily be fully restored. Perhaps the more difficult part will be making key components like the engine and transmission run like they did back in 1981.

Although production of the M1 ended 35 years ago, it remains one of the most desirable and sought after cars ever produced by the brand. In total, just 453 units were produced with each of the road car’s powered by a twin-cam 3.5-liter six-cylinder petrol engine.


  • john1168


    • Dickie F

      Does anyone know the background story as to why it was not used for all these years?

      • JL T0x

        Maybe at that time, fuel got too expensive for daily usage, so they “parked” it & drove a cheaper vehicle – then it was forgotten. or it was “garaged” as an investment – demand/interest dropped for a while afterwards. Then the owner had never gotten any good offers to sell so they decided to just keep it.

        I can imagine that the original owner is either an older gent or has probably has died by now. Somebody just happened to be looking through old junk in this garage was like “WOW! Do you know what car that is….?” A lucky “barn find” for real.

  • CRAZY.

  • Bash

    Sad, but it gonna be amazing.. in a while

  • MLM

    Oh. My. God……

  • Day_Trader

    Wow, leather dashboard back in 1982?! And I still have plastic in my 2016 Acura!!! 🙁

    • nastinupe

      Because it’s an Acura. Do better, you should be ashamed of yourself. And you call yourself a car enthusiast. task risk.

      • Jay

        Just because they are here doesn’t mean they are a car enthusiast, I get your joke but just sayin…

        • nastinupe

          You’re right. I was just joking with him. Hell my wife has an Acura MDX and I love that SUV. I guess we car guys can be assholes to each other at time. Even though that’s how we communicate and don’t really mean anything for real. Like I can say that GT-R owners are pricks. And they can say that Porsche owners are snobs. And someone else can say that BMW owners are pousers, but it’s all love for real.

          • Bibo

            Acura doesnt even exist in germany (i know its called honda here) BMW M Power is is the only thing u need on our Autobahn 😉

        • Day_Trader

          I know guys, I know 🙁 But hey, Acura is better than Chrysler, Ford and alike! But then again, plastic dashboard 🙁 Sigh… Wait! It’s a “soft touch” plastic! Feel better now.

  • Six Thousand Times

    Well, it’s all there and it shares a lot of parts with standard BMWs so it should be a pretty straightforward resto. It’ll certainly need new belts, hoses, and bushings. Probably wiring, too. There aren’t enough pix of the seats to tell if mice have been at ’em. Looks like a hell of a find. I never stumble into the right barns, alas.

  • Obsequious Lickspittle

    Haha! Pic 8 looks like the wheel embossment is smiling.

  • Tumbi Mtika


  • Wandering_Spirit

    Nice find! And gorgeous car

  • CarCzarDesigner

    Mint Classics could give this car back to BMW and they could restore it to factory spec, just like they did with Elvis’s 507.

    • Andrewthecarguy

      Yes. But at what cost??

      • CarCzarDesigner

        Who cares? It is a rare exotic with an impeccable reputation. It was built by Lamborghini for BMW and was styled by Giorgetto Giugiaro of Ital Design. This served as the basis for the M1 Procar Racing Series where it was driven by many Formula One drivers in various International events including being raced at LeMans. It is a champion and still a head turner 38 years later. A Factory restored car would command a higher price at auction, as it would come with a Certificate of Authenticity.

        • Andrewthecarguy

          I knew you were going to say that.
          Good wiki and google skills though 😉

          • CarCzarDesigner

            No Andrew. I was already familiar with the M1. I have my own collection of books and publications from around the world, which is better.

            Now, here is a trivia question for you. Although, this should be pretty easy for you. The M1 was controversial at the time of its introduction. Why?

          • Andrewthecarguy

            Go to know you have books and pubs. You are better suited to tell us why the controversy, don’t you think?

          • antbee

            It was too pretty? It looked kinda like a DeLorean?

  • Axiom Ethos

    Would really love to hear the back story on how this treasure got abandoned.

    • Andrewthecarguy

      I’m thinking mafia.

  • Honda NSX-R

    Can’t wait to see the M1 fully restored!

  • MmmPorsche

    Just looking at the motor photo there’s no sign of corrosion whatsoever. Heck, just wash it. The thing is mint underneath the dirt.

  • ME

    The owner must have passed away for something like this to have happen

  • Ary Wisesa

    OMG, Did the barn owner really not know that he have a very precious gem in his barn? I can’t believe he left this beautiful (and very important, history wise) BMW M1 to rot. Oh my…

  • Beelzaboot teriaksun

    DOT 380 Tires, unreal. Proper barn-find

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