‘American Pickers’: Mike Wolfe Drops Incredible Before and After Snaps of 1939 Ford Coupe

by Caitlin Berard

Throughout his time as a professional picker, Mike Wolfe has bought countless incredible, near-priceless items. Most of what he finds is then cleaned up and sold for a profit, but a particular category of antiques is often added to the American Pickers star’s collection instead – vehicles.

Over the years, Wolfe has amassed a luxury car collection worth hundreds of thousands of dollars and counting. Among his extraordinary collection are a 1947 red Hudson truck, a 1959 Chevrolet El Camino, and a 1932 Ford Roadster. His newest addition, however, might be the most impressive one yet.

When he stumbled upon a 1939 Ford Coupe in a barn, Wolfe knew he found something truly amazing. Though the car is more than 80 years old, it’s in near-mint condition. Washing off the dirt accumulated from decades of resting in storage revealed that the original black paint didn’t have so much as a scratch.

In an Instagram post, the American Pickers star showed off his newest find. “Just starting to clean this 1939 Ford Coupe,” he wrote in the caption. “Original paint is insane!! Might be one of the nicest 39 Fords on the planet. Car has been sitting since 1975. We have had two locksmiths try and get the door open. Haven’t had luck yet. Interior looks mint thru the glass.”

‘American Pickers’ Star Mike Wolfe Explains His Love for Bikes

Though Mike Wolfe has a fondness for vehicles of all shapes and sizes, he holds a particularly strong admiration for bikes. In fact, before he was the star of American Pickers, before he even became an antique trader, he wanted to open a bike shop – and he did. According to Wolfe, his childhood dream not only became a reality but was more successful than he could have imagined.

“I had taken a job as a sales rep and one of the shops I called on was for sale,” Wolfe recalled to Bicycling. “So I traded my old bicycles and everything I had—everything—to get it. I did $150 the first day and took the store from 75 bikes a year to 500 bikes a year the first year.”

“That’s when mountain bikes were taking off,” he continued. “I was the largest Manitou dealer in the country. It was nuts. We were rocking it so hard we opened another store in East Davenport.”

For Mike Wolfe, the older the bike, the better. He’s collected a number of pre-WWII bikes on American Pickers and explained that the “mysterious” antiques are what keep him interested in picking. “I just fell in love with the early stuff,” Wolfe said. “It was so archaic and primitive and mysterious.”

“Just seeing a bike with wood rims and cork grips that is over 100 years old is so freaking powerful. I’m all about discovery, unearthing cool things, and finding the story behind them. That’s what keeps me going.”