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Modern Barn Find: 1996 Buick Roadmaster Wagon

Finding a car made in the last few decades that’s already as dusty and forgotten as something with fins or from the brass era is a rarity, but this 1996 Buick Roadmaster Estate Wagon certainly looks every part of having been forgotten for decades. The seller notes that it belongs to his mother-in-law and has 114,000 miles on the clock, and doesn’t run at the moment. Find it here on Facebook Marketplace with an asking price of $3,000 and located in Hillsboro, Missouri.

The Roadmaster is described as being in “great condition”, but that could be interpreted a few different ways. Great for a barn find? That seems reasonable. The paintwork is hard to assess with all of the dust and debris still coating it, but the woodgrain trim is mostly intact in pictures. At the very least, it looks largely original with the factory wheels and white-line tires still bolted on; surprisingly, they still hold air. The top picture shows damage to the passenger front fender where it meets the bumper.

The interior isn’t in a great state, with heavy wear noted on the steering wheel and what looks like an awful lot of junk stored inside. The leather isn’t bad, but the seating surfaces in these and its corporate twins are prone to surviving in better condition than the exterior would otherwise suggest. So, I wouldn’t read too much into the leather condition, other than being reasonably confident it will clean up without too much effort once the cabin is cleaned out.

The venerable 5.7L V8 doesn’t run at the moment, which is a bit of a shock – these generally will fire even when neglected. The seller notes it turns over fine but doesn’t fire; he suggests a fuel filter, or perhaps the fuel pump needs replacing. A new battery will accompany the sale, but it will undoubtedly need more work than that to reliably start once again. While the collector market for these classic American wagons is definitely taking off, examples like this are still widely available for short money. Is the price on this forgotten example a fair ask?


  1. Shaun Miller

    I’m not sure the year listed in here is correct. The 94-96 had the LT1, I suspect this is a 91-92. In non running condition and the damage to the front, this vehicle is not worth the asking price.

    Like 1
  2. Jim

    How did THIS car end up on Barn Finds? Not rare, not desireable, not unique…..just a dirty 24 year old car.

    Like 14
    • daniel wright

      It is the last of the big V8, rear wheel drive American Wagons. I would drive the wheels off it.

      Like 26
    • AW

      I bought a LT1 Caprice brand new in 1995. This is a 1993 Roadmaster. 94-96 Roadmasters had the detuned Corvette LT1 engine (this one has the throttle-body injected 350), and 95-96 models had the larger foldable side mirrors like my Caprice had. I agree with you Jim. Not rare, desirable, or unique. If whomever can get the engine running, you could make a cruiser out of it, but nothing more.

      Like 11
      • Gary Gary

        AW you are absolutely correct when you state that it’s a 1993. I know because my daily driver is a green/gray 1993 Buick Roadmaster Wagon that has that exact motor, dash layout, etc. 1993 was the last year for the L05 350 ci V8, except for the trucks & vans which continued with the L05 thru 1996. I also have a 1994 9C1 and a 1994 Impala SS, both of which have the LT1 350 ci V8.

        Like 4
    • Matt

      These cars are hugely popular right now with the 1996 being at the top of the heap. It’s a cool car, even if you don’t get it.

      Like 9
      • JEFF S

        This is not a 1996 as it does not have the LT=1 engine
        It is worth about $1000 in none running mode

        Like 0
    • Poppy

      Uh, ‘cuz it’s actually a barn find, unlike many of the cars on here.

      Like 3
  3. KEVIN

    needs to go back in the barn until 2050

    Like 14
  4. Jack

    Oh yea of little imagination. Real mild to stock 454 3.42 or 3.73 gear and you have a really great sleeper. Headers and everything else are available. The Impala from the same era had the 454. Nobody would see you coming!

    Like 1
    • ACZ

      The last B body with a 454 was 1976. After that they were only in trucks.

      Like 0
  5. Jcs

    Awesome wagons. Powerful. Body on frame. Great utility. LT1/4L60 combo virtually bulletproof. Incredibly comfortable. Stellar road car. Surprisingly economical. Huge aftermarket. Inexpensive to repair. All Impala SS parts interchange. Tremendous forum support.

    I’d say that these cars are certainly welcome here. To suggest otherwise seems illogical to me.

    Like 24
    • R12

      It’s not an LT1. Barnfinds accidentally has it as a 96 but it is a 93 model. Between that, the mileage,non runner and price they can keep it.

      Like 1
  6. Jay

    Front right damage

    Must of hit the dock

    Last of the great wagons !

    Hope somebody saves it…..

    Like 3
  7. marlon w smith

    Road Hog !!!

    Like 0
  8. Maestro1 Member

    I’m with JCS. I want one, don’t have the room yet, try this at a lower number and give it what it needs. You won’t be disappointed.

    Like 0
  9. Dave

    Way overpriced for a car that doesn’t run. $1K car if it did run. Fit as a donor car.

    Like 2
  10. ACZ

    This is not a 1996. Maybe a 1992 or 1991. That is not an LT1 engine. Also, the dash has a tachometer. When the change was made to go to the LT1, the instrument cluster was changed and the tach was deleted. This was based on complaints from owners of the earlier ones about the speedometer being too hard to read. Go figure!

    Like 0
    • YourSoundMan


      Are they sure those drivers were looking at the speedometer? 🤣🤣🤣

      Like 0
      • ACZ

        Some may not have been able to see over the steering wheel.

        Like 0
    • JEFF S

      I checked out the add and it says 1993
      The LT-1 was in the 94 thru 96 Roadmasters.

      Like 0
  11. Bill McCoskey Bill McCoskey Member

    I can’t remember how many cars I pulled out of barns & garages over the decades, that were piled full of car parts or non-automotive items, from cylinder heads, cranks, clothing, furniture, old electronics, lamps, etc. What I found was if the items were fairly heavy, and stayed in the same position for many years, the seat surfaces were usually stretched out of shape, and even after allowed to sit uncluttered, the seats never returned to their normal shape, especially leather seats.

    In the late 1980s I bought a 1959 Bentley “S”, a very nice car with low mileage, but the previous owner’s son had taken the entire engine apart & stored everything [including the block] on the bare leather seats! It cost me almost as much to reupholster the interior, as it did to rebuild the engine.

    Like 0
  12. Chuck

    My boss had a new 94 Roadmaster wagon, and I got the chance to drive it to the dealer for some service work. Over 100 mph on rural state highways…smooth as silk ride. He would have had stroked out if he’d known how fast I was driving his car. Hahahahaha.

    Like 0
  13. Brett Battan

    I’m not sure about this one it has a pre LT1 dash in it so it’s likely it’s a 91-93 model, I bought my 1995 Roadmaster Sedan back in 2014 from the original owner and it only had 81,000 miles on it at the time and it was actually stored since 2006 really low mileage either way you slice it, So for this being in a barn with over 114,000 miles I’m not sure it’s worthy of any praise. However the wagons are cool and have a bigger following than my sedan.

    Like 0
  14. Alex

    Wow, that’s priced REALLY high for the condition. While there’s an enthusiast base for these, it’s not big enough to fetch $3k for a non-runner. Especially given he has a time constraint to get rid of it. It’ll probably end up in a junkyard for $300… that would be a shame.

    Like 0

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