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Barn Dart: 1959 Daimler SP250


This 1959 Daimler SP250 was found shoved in the corner of this barn, where it had been parked for many years. The current owner pulled it free with the intent of restoring it, but life has gotten in the way so they are selling it. It appears to be solid, but will need a complete restoration. If you are up to the task, it can be found here on eBay.


This Dart hasn’t been on the road since 1973 so it is going to need everything gone through. The seller hasn’t tried to turn the motor over yet, but with any luck it isn’t locked up. They claim it is solid, with only surface rust. These unique little sports cars were powered by a 2.5 liter hemi head V8 and are becoming rather sought after. Any takers?


  1. rancho bella

    These are very odd looking cars………….but, oddly, i like em’. Cozy little V8 and that’s the ticket. Looks like certain models of Studebaker on the nose

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  2. J. Pickett

    Neat little cars, even used by Bobbies on the motorways. Early ones had rigidity problems, doors popped open on corners. The body is fiberglass, later cars were stiffer and the door problem went away. When Sir William Lyons bought Daimler in the early 60’s he let the sports car die, obvious competition for the E. He kept the engine for a Daimler variant of the small Jag sedan the 250, Marketed to people who still wanted the name but didn’t want the sporty atitude ot the Jaguars. He also kept producing a larger version of the engine 4.5 ltrs. for large limos and hearses still to be seen today as Jaguar continued production of some till the early 80’s. This if the frame is ok and the engine turns would be a great restoration project.

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  3. Craig Bothwell

    Car looks like a grouper

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  4. Robert J

    These appear to be rising in value over the past couple of years. A really nice modified SP250 with a Chevy big block swap sold on EBay for $10K about two years ago. It was very capably upgraded to handle the power.

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  5. Catfish Phil

    Saw three restored SP-250’s at a car show last Easter, and they were fantastic little sports cars. Nice seeing the optional hard top, and at least on the exterior, this example appears to be complete. The restored ones had pitting on the tail light pot metal – guess those are no longer available.

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  6. Trickie Dickie Member

    This car was designed in China by a committee, and then built by the British. Not really, of course, but the design of this car always wants to make me say something humorous, but that is just me.

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  7. Dolphin Member

    I’ve said it before…like others here, I like these despite the catfish face. Makes ’em unique and unforgettable, I say.

    Then there’s that great hemi V8 engine, which might be enough by itself to justify owning one. Back in the ’60s this was a unique and desirable car mainly because of that hemi V8, and when you see those angled, opposed SU carbs that small V8 looks exactly right.

    Makes a great sound, and will easily rev beyond 6 grand when running right, while a 3-litre Healey runs out of breath around 5 grand. Rarity, that leather interior, and the Daimler name all added to the appeal.

    The body on this one looks OK from here, and the hard top is a big plus. The interior is shot and will need redoing. More of a possible concern is the frame, despite being in the South a lot, because part of the time it was in humid Georgia and now it’s in the rust belt. And it would be nice to see what’s under the hood. The seller says he’ll add photos, so let’s hope things will turn out to be complete under there.

    With strong bidding and no reserve it will find a new home, as it should. It just won’t be mine. It’s the old story: looks like it needs lots of work just to get the systems healthy again and the interior habitable—confirmed by the seller, who I think knows these cars. Better to round up some more ca$h now and buy a decent driver. It will likely be cheaper in the long run, and you’ll be driving a lot sooner.

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  8. Dolphin Member

    Sold for $16,400, with a $5K jump in the bid in the last few seconds. Looks like there were 2 people “in the room” who really wanted it.

    Enjoy the ride!

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  9. Peter

    Wow, price paid for this project makes no sense. Spend another $10K and get a decent running, driving one right out if the chute.

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