Coolest Porsche Ad Ever!

1986 Porsche Brochure

Thirty-eight years ago, Professor Ferdinand Porsche and his son, Ferry, built the first cars to bear the family name. As a direct result, Porsche enthusiasts of today are subject to a recurring dream. Which goes something like this: After running out of gas on a remote country road, you hike over to a distant farmhouse, knock on the door and ask an old man with a weathered face if he has some gas you can buy. “Sure”, he says. Out in the barn, as he sets to work with gas can and siphon, something in the shadows catches your eye…

There – enshrouded in dust, sitting lopsided on a time-flattened tire – is a 1958 Porsche 356 Speedster. Left behind 25 years earlier, you discover, by a son on his way to boot camp and a subsequent commitment to marriage, family and a station wagon. Nonchalantly, you walk around it, examine it, and realize that, under the dust, nothing is missing. It’s all there. Waiting. “Never got around to selling it”, the old man says. “Oh?” you reply, stifling the urge to hug a perfect stranger. “I might be interested”. “You would, eh? $500 be too much?” And then you wake up.

This tale comes directly from the cover of a 1986 Porsche brochure and proves that people have been chasing the elusive barn find for decades! I thought it was an interesting piece that you would all get a kick out of. In fact, we probably need to get enlarged copy to hang on the wall here at the office! The actual pamphlet that provided the story and photo above can be found here on eBay for $9.11 or best offer. Can you guys find any other old literature that features a barn find?


  1. Rspcharger Rspcharger

    Speaking of ads, can Barnfinds do something about the video ads on the side of the page, like get rid of them. My aging computer is having one heck of a time scrolling with those. Then all of a sudden BOOM, the volume is activated and I’m hearing some chick talk about her yoga…..WTF?

    • packrat

      I got so tired of the computer hanging up on these grand multimedia autoplay baroque things that end up disturbing the people in the house with me. Finally got that AdBlocker that I had heard of for years. I wouldn’t mind these removed ads having a text pane underneath them that you could hover over or something to let them know you’ve seen it without all the e-fretwork: “Yes, I’m an old guy and the various advertisers have seen fit to show me me Panty Hose, Base Jumping Vacation Packages and single-serve artisanal boiled eggs and free ranged locally sourced candles delivered to the door. Acknowledge, Acknowledge, Acknowledge.”

      • Chebby

        You haven’t lived until you’ve base-jumped in panty hose. A little fear is the perfect sauce for those eggs. ;)

      • Rando

        Chebby, a friend of mine did something like 1600 jumps and the only ones that ever went wrong were the “fun” ones. He recalls jumping naked for a friend’s birthday. Wind blew him into a McDs parking lot. He tried to wrap up quickly in his chute but an older lady apparently enjoyed the show.

    • Howard A Member

      Hi Rspcharger, well, due to the fact that most of us here will probably never buy a vehicle through BF’s, ( which I’d hope BF’s gets a kickback out of) and pretty much a “memory lane” thing for most, the site I’m sure is not free to run, and the ads are a necessary item to keep things moving. I say, it’s a small distraction compared to the cool site we are able to access for free ( well, almost free)

    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

      Unless you guys are willing to start paying a subscription to access the site, the ads have to stay. Running a site this large is very expensive and this is Josh and I’s full time gig. If any of you are willing to pay a couple bucks a month, we can give you a login so you won’t see any ads. People are accustomed to getting everything for free online though, so I doubt many will want to do that. Please let me know if I’m wrong and please don’t use an ad blocker because then no one makes any money from the sites that they have worked very hard to produce. Thanks!

      • nessy

        No don’t do that Jesse. If you start charging a fee to access the site, the site may start to fizz as most people are not going to cough up the dough. Don’t listen to a few duds who fuss over pop up ads or any other bs. I’m sure 99% of us like the site just the way it is and we know the ads help make the money. This is a business for you. Do what you need to do. I could care less if I get 10 pop up ads before I can read the site. Who cares?

      • Spridget

        Is there anyway to have ads that are just pictures? When my computer tries to load both the animated ads and the large BF pictures, it runs super slow.

      • Mark S

        I say spend $300.00 and get an iPad it is very easy to scold this sight on one. And you can sit in your recliner while you scroll.

      • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

        @nessy – I wasn’t talking about charging for access, I just meant that we could have a paid option that would be ad-free. The content would still be free for everyone to read, but people willing to pay a few bucks a month would get a login like the writers have and they wouldn’t have to see the ads anymore.

      • packrat

        Jesse, I don’t mind trying to turn off the AdBlock again if you rein in the video stuff. Just be careful what manner of ads are done. We all appreciate you, and nobody wants to chop you all off at the knees. Everybody, I think, wants you to Get Paid. And, everyone, you included, reading this has seen other sites elsewhere that slowly creep up with tweaks to push people through a wall of ads before the users view any content.** Some get so obnoxious, through that or censorship, that viewers cease using it altogether. As I said, I don’t mind doing a little *extra work* to let advertisers know that I’ve seen their stuff, a captcha where I’d have to type “eggs” “vacation packages” “candles” etc. to let ’em know it’s not a bot.

        **All me and, I think, Rspcharger are saying is, don’t be “That Guy”. Don’t become “That Website”. Peace.

      • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

        Well, we are at the mercy of the ad networks. People have become blind to static ads so advertisers have turned to video and sound. I don’t like it either. Perhaps we need to look into the ad free membership thing like the forums do.

      • Rob

        My 2 cents worth..
        I too got tired of all the Ads on most sites these days, so I set my ‘puter to ‘ask’ if I want to allow Adobe Flash to run on a site such as this, and I don’t get any blaring Ads that way. Then if I really do want to see a Video, etc play, I can allow it, but just for that one time. But the REAL reason I did this, was it stopped my ‘puter from ‘crashing’ from time to time, which was even more annoying. Oh, and no, I don’t have any problem playing YouTube Videos, as they don’t require Adobe to play..

      • Rspcharger Rspcharger

        Ads are A-OK, its the video ones that cause heartache, that’s all I’m saying.

      • BMW/Tundra Guy

        I’m a bit behind in my BF addiction due to having been on vacation. Hence my 1/2¢ worth coming in so late. This topic has come up numerous times?!?!?!?!? And it always seems to come down to pay up or hush up. I for one, couldn’t care less about the ads. I have always felt that due to the quality of the content, both on the BF staff side but also on the “reply” side, that a fee would not be an unreasonable request. At one point it seems that a $50 (?) number was being tossed around. Haven’t heard anything more since?!? I personally have learned SO SO SO much from both sides on this site, that the “price of admission” versus the educational gain, is an absolute no brainer!!!!!!!!!!! Where do I pay up…………………??????????????

    • Dolphin Member

      It’s not always understood that no website like this is free. It costs to maintain it up and running, and it takes guys’ time and energy to create it, staff it, and maintain it.

      That’s what the ads that appear with this site do—they pay the bills.

      I would rather pay a subscription fee to have Barn Finds, but as long as people shy away from doing that, I can understand that the ads will have to stay.

      And if you really like Barn Finds it wouldn’t hurt to respond to some of the ads now and then.

      • Ron500E

        I tried responding but I have an Organic Respond Blocker, my wife…..

    • Jeff S.

      The problem is the Javascript in the adds. On Firefox there is an extension called ‘JS’ that toggles Javascript execution on and off. There should be similar extensions for other popular browsers.

  2. packrat

    I remember when that came out. It was a centerfold two page ad in car magazines as well as I recall, and thought it very clever of them to riff on the love for their older designs–versus the road to ruin their sister company VW went down with hatred and disavowal of all things air-cooled–even telling VW support companies to remove the large, factory “VW” logo from the front of vans in their enthusiast magazine ads. Two kinds of companies…

  3. S.S. McDonald

    You wrote, “Thirty-eight years ago, Professor Ferdinand Porsche and his son, Ferry, built the first cars to bear the family name.” How do you explain my 67 year old 1949 Porsche, one of 52 built?

    • Dave Wright

      I thought the same thing but I think he was quoting a period ad. So, is your car one of the Austrian built ones? I saw one at the factory Museum last fall………very cool stuf. I had a 52 coupe many lives ago. When we took the door apart to repair a broken hinge, you could see the hand cut file marks in the mounting nuts. A true hand built work of art.

      • Bill McCoskey Bill McCoskey Member

        Dave & S.S. —

        Back in the late 70’s here in Maryland, I briefly owned a brown 1949 or 1950 Cabriolet. Never had it running, nor saw a title, & I ended up selling it to one of my mechanics at the British car repair/restoration shop I managed. I did manage to take some pictures before I sold it.

        A few years ago I found out that this same car [still in Maryland] was the first cabriolet brought into the US by Hoffman in NYC. I was informed Porsche arranged to “borrow” the car for a year, did a $250k restoration to it, and used it in several promotional events before returning it to the current owner. [If you are a PCA member, I suspect you will know this beautiful blue car!]

        It’s just one of the many cars, that at the time were worth little, I let slip thru my greasy fingers, only to watch them become mega valuable!

    • DAN

      This tale comes directly from the cover of a 1986 Porsche brochure

    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

      Right in the third paragraph, I wrote that this is from a 1986 Porsche brochure. Does anyone even read what we write anymore?

      • Dave at OldSchool Restorations

        LOL…sure we can read… If you put ” quotes in the beginning, we would have UNDERSTOOD is was a quote…..

        No big deal…. you guys do a great job



      • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

        It’s in italics, but I’m guessing some people didn’t make it that far before skipping to the comments.

      • DA

        Jesse, thanks for all you do. You are quite concise and clear in your writing. Also wish more people understood technology these days, you’ve done a great job. Hope Barn Finds is around for years to come.

  4. OGwagon

    If you read closely the quote in the ad is from 1986.
    1948 being the year Porsche officially started producing.
    I’m no mathmagician and subtraction was never my strong suitut even I can figure out that is 38 years.

    I worked in the vintage p-car tent at the 50th anniversary for Porsche in 1998 at Laguna Seca. Hands down one of my favorite gigs ever.

    There were rare rides that hadn’t made it outta Porsche’s barn for decades including a 917, 904 & 1939 tractor.

  5. Dolphin Member

    I remember when this ad insert came out in some of the major US car magazines in 1986. It was well done, but when it got pulled out of the magazines and started to appear on Ebay as a “Porsche brochure” it usually sold for a buck or two—-if it sold at all.

    The listing for this Ebay auction has ended, and it sold for $9.11, and if the buyer needs international shipping that costs an additional $18.11 (aren’t those numbers special !), for a grand total of way too much $ for a well done car ad that mostly got thrown away with the rest of the magazine back in ’86.

    It looks like Porsche price craziness has trickled down to the least valuable / exclusive of recent Porsche ads.

    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

      This was an ad that Porsche ran in magazines, but they also used it on the cover of their 1986 lineup brochure. Seems sort of strange, but it was such a cool ad that they must have wanted to incorporate it somewhere in that year’s sales literature.

      • Chebby

        I believe the writer is Tom McElligott, his agency Fallon McElligott out of Minneapolis did lots of classy work for Porsche in the 80’s.

        Google it for fun, most of the ads are still very good.

  6. Stang1968

    $9.11 is too much for this. It would be better priced at $3.56.

    • RayT Member

      Gee, and I was willing to put in a bid at $5.50….

  7. nessy

    I remember first seeing this ad in one of the auto magazines in the fall of 85. I remember reading it over and over, yes, it was a great ad.

  8. DRV

    The ads never bother me….especially when they pay the bills.

  9. David

    Here’s my best barn find story. Years ago, in the mid 1970s, I was opening a motel in Atlanta, actually. I took a weekend drive north and spotted a 1958 Corvette in a barn. It was a project started by a kid that didn’t come home from Vietnam. There were shelves full of parts. His father offered to sell it all to me VERY cheap. I offered instead to have a friend look it over and give him a fair price. I took lots of pictures, it was film back then, got his contact info and left. I called my buddy George in Santa Barbara and told him the story and that I would send pictures. “F that” he says, I’ll be in Atlanta tomorrow.” I picked him up at the airport the next morning and drove him up to meet with the father and a friend. George dug around, took lots of notes, added things up and came up with a surprisingly large number. The dad agreed and George pulled out a wad of bills and the deal was done. The dad then took the cash and handed it to his friend who represented a vetrans group. George flew a couple of his guys out. They rented a truck and tow dolly and hauled it all back to Santa Barbara. Now, I get to tell people I could have bought a 1958 Corvette for $500!

    • Dolphin Member

      Yes, great story.

      If / when a real ’58 washboard hood car shows up on BF you should tell it again just to remind us.

  10. Dave Wright

    Great story……………

  11. john C

    Interesting comments here today… I have a 13 year old Dell and boy is it slow…however I am not bothered by the ads…understanding that they ‘do’ pay for us to enjoy our interests ostensibly ‘cost free’. Wore my ‘original’ BarnFinds t-shirt yesterday at our local small town “Cruise-In”. A nice shirt…thanx Keep up this fine site gentlemen !!

  12. Bob Hess

    In 1985 we bought wrecked, rust free ’59 356 Convertible D and a rusty ’57 Speedster for $550. Traded the Speedster for parts for another Speedster we bought for $1,500 and had started restoring. The Convertible D went to our friend’s body shop for parts for him to restore two 356s and for bodywork and paint on our “as it should have been built” ’74 914 street/autocross car. By the time we got done building the race engine for the 914 we had exceeded the money we had in the 356s. Like I said about the yellow Lotus Europa autocross car a few days ago…..Speedster we were restoring got 25% done and sold to a friend in Dallas for $15,000.

  13. Craig

    I owned this car, yellow same year, came with a wicker picnic basket on the engine lid. It came in as a trade in at the Audi dealer I worked at in Colorado Springs. A drivers training car pulled a turn in front of me one day and did a number on the front end. I could not afford at the time to fix it and had to sell. Worst decision of my life.

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