The Fascinating Journey of a Rust-Free, One Owner, All Original ’59 Chevy Biscayne in Gold Gotham


Most barn-found cars hold a story. Some of them are forgotten, abandoned, or hoarded, but many of them are in storage because they mean so much to the owners that they are not willing to let them go just yet.

Still, nothing warms the heart of a classic car prospector than stumbling upon a neatly preserved relic with a little bit of history and barn dust. This rust-free 1959 Chevrolet Biscayne is one of those finds.

Rust-Free, One Owner, All Original '59 Chevy Biscayne in Gold Gotham Gets a Lucky Buyer - autoevolution

Ryan of Iowa Classic Cars YouTube channel recently found this classic, one-owner 1959 Chevrolet Biscayne, on Facebook Market Place with the help of his fans. And within 5 minutes of posting, he made a deal to get it sight unseen.

Not many people have the guts to pull off a stunt like that. Most experienced classic car prospectors will tell you buying a classic car sight unseen is like playing Russian roulette. There’s always a big chance you’ll take a hit.

Well, Ryan knows his way around classic cars. If anything, he owns a few 59s, and from the uploaded video, he was pretty confident about his eyeballing capabilities.

Barn-found Biscayne has an interesting history

This 1959 Chevrolet Biscayne has quite an exciting story. It holds much compassionate value to the family it initially belonged to. According to the seller (original owner’s great-grandson), it belonged to his grandmother, who died at 102 years.

“She was a one-owner. Drove it till she was 90 years old. And we finally decided she didn’t need to drive anymore,” the owner’s great-grandson revealed.

The seller took possession of the car after his grandmother turned 90 and was unfit to drive. He took it to college and drove it around for a year before storing it on a farm (he never changed the title).

This 1959 Chevrolet Biscayne is in good shape, considering the years it’s been in storage. We wouldn’t categorize it as a rust bucket. According to the previous owners, it’s been sitting for 20 years.

Rust-free but needs some love

On the exterior, there’s some physical damage on the right quarter panel – made by the previous owner’s grandmother parking it in a garage. The rear window glass is also missing. The owner said it was busted while in storage.

Perhaps the best thing about this classic gem is that it cleaned up nicely after Ryan got home. The taillight was intact with no breakages, the front fender had no damage, and there was no rust in the rockers or floors. It was completely rust-free, a rarity in a 64-year-old barn find.

Unfortunately, the interior was in terrible shape. Critters had the best of it while in storage for the past two decades. Simply put, it’s a bare-bones six-cylinder engined classic without a radio.

The best bit about it, and perhaps the main reason Ryan made a deal on it sight unseen, is its rust-free condition and one-owner status. Apart from the damage on the rear right, its original Gothic Gold shade was still sparking under the 20-year-old barn dust.

“I’ve got a few 59s, and when you find them in a barn like this, it’s a rare sight and more. I think it’ll clean up just fine. I’ve got the window for it and the back glass,” Ryan told the previous owners as he loaded it up the trailer.

The Chevy Biscayne was an affordable alternative to the prevalent Impala

If you are new to classic cars, this Chevrolet Biscayne’s dramatic rear design might remind you of old Hollywood movies. It’s not as fancy as the Bel Air or Impala, and according to American automotive history, it was introduced as an affordable alternative to the former and latter.

The no-frills Biscayne was introduced by Chevrolet for the fleet market in 1958 and remained in production for 14 years up to 1972. However, GM Canada continued selling it through 1975.

Like the Impala, the 1959 Chevrolet Biscayne had multiple engine options, including a six-cylinder (3.2-liter Blue Flame I6) engine and V8s (4.6-liter V8 and 5.7-liter V8). The most prevalent version was the 348 5.7-liter V8. Ryan’s find was the former – 3.2-liter six-cylinder with a two-speed Powerglide transmission.

Restoration plans are underway

We are unsure how much Ryan got this classic gem for, but neglected versions of the same model have sold for about $1,900 on eBay. On sites like Bring a Trailer, low-mileage, neatly restored versions of the same are on sale for about $12,000.

Ryan’s not planning on flipping it just yet (he admitted on camera he’s getting it for himself). His first line of action is getting the stuck-up motor running.

“We’re gonna get the engine soaking, it’s stuck right now, but we are going to get it soaking with some acetone and ATF and hopefully break it free,” he said.

We can’t wait to see what plans Ryan has in store and if it finally gets to run for the first time in 20 years. It’ll be great for his fans and the previous owner to see it again on the road.

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