Live Auctions

British Barn Find: 1949 Bentley Mark VI

When it comes to early post-war luxury cars, it’s sometimes hard to understand where the values fall for a model that otherwise looks like it should be worth six figures. If you’re the type of person who wants the general public to be impressed with your collector car without spending big bucks, it seems to me that a vintage Rolls-Royce or Bentley product will have everyone fooled right quick. This 1949 Bentley Mark VI looks to be in fantastic condition despite being called a barn find, and is listed here on craigslist for a very reasonable $22,000. It even runs and drives!

With suicide doors, acres of real leather and wood trim, and an art deco styling that no modern “recreation” has ever managed to replicate, the Mark VI is the sort of car that just commands respect the second it pulls up in your rear view. This was one of Bentley’s first post-war luxury models and it featured factory coachwork as opposed to the more typical approach of outsourcing that work. If nothing else, it certainly put the company’s in-house talent on display, as this was a gorgeous car with nary a bad angle on it. The seller doesn’t explain how this came to a barn find but it was apparently very well stored while it was laid up.

The assembly process still involved a few different shops to put the car together, but the end result was still a very high-quality machine with every luxury feature that was available at the time. It came standard with a full-length sunroof, interior courtesy lamps, and wood trim that ran the length of the doors. This model was even available as an extremely rare coachbuilt wagon body with “woody”-style side paneling. Still, the basic sedan body as seen here doesn’t tend to command a lot of money on the auction circuit these days, and I imagine some interest is waning as the generation that remembers these cars begins to wind down their collections.

The interior of the seller’s car is still in fine shape for a vehicle that’s been sitting, and oftentimes these old British luxury cars with their ornate interiors look positively awful inside as the real wood trim perishes and the leather splits apart. This car had to have been kept in a storage environment whereby the temperature was steady and moisture was kept at bay as it simply presents too well inside. The seller notes it is powered by an inline-six engine with factory dual carbs paired to a four-speed manual transmission – which sounds like it’d be an awful lot of fun to wring out once it’s been mechanically sorted.


  1. Mikefromthehammer

    You definitely will not see another one like this at any Cars and Coffee events you attend. I just hope the new owner treats it with the respect it deserves.

    Like 4
  2. SMS

    Remember being at a local vintage car Saturday morning get together. I had my ‘40 Hudson, a Packard 120, and Bentley similar to this except a two door were parked next to each other. All three were close to the same size, about the same as the current Camry, except narrower.

    The Hudson was sturdy, Packard used too grade parts and was well engineered, Bentley was crafted. All three cars were driven two or three days a week. All three cars were reliable, easy to work on, and most parts were available.

    This looks like it could be a good buy

    Like 2
  3. Bill

    Nice drivers sell on BAT for 13-26. Buy the best one you can afford….

    Like 2
  4. Graeme I

    22K is not cheap for a car in this condition.

    Like 3
  5. David r

    Restored dead stock on the outside with a modern engine and wiring? I don’t know how much it would be worth but might be fun.

    • SMS

      The motors are lovely and strong. If I were king of the world would modernize the fueling, brakes, shocks, ignition, transmission, and oil filter. Then again I am a big fan of inline sixes and eights.

      Like 1

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