Love classic cars? Look no further than Auburn, Indiana, in the northeast area of the state! Affectionately nicknamed “Home of the Classics,” the quaint midwestern city is brimming with automotive fun. Here’s everything you need to check out the next time you visit, including details on its car museums.

The Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum

Auburn 101

Compliments of its early role in the American automotive industry, Auburn offers fans of old-school car cool the chance to delve into its history through museums and festivals. 

Walking around its downtown area is like taking a trip back in time, thanks to the historic buildings, historical markers, and overall vibe. E.L. Cord, car salesman and businessman extraordinaire, became the director of the Auburn Automobile Company in 1924 and was its president by 1926. With the additional purchase of the Duesenberg Automobile Company, he became a multimillionaire. 

Compliments of the Great Depression in the 1940s, the ACD (Auburn Cord Duesenberg) Company came to a halt, but those auto glory days still live on in the city. 

The National Auto and Truck Museum

National Auto & Truck Museum

There’s nothing like the scent and sound of a car museum. Happily, the National Auto & Truck Museum checks all of the boxes! The former home of the Auburn Automobile Company, the once-bustling buildings are now sleek, smooth, and ideally lit. 

Both The Service and New Parts Building and the L-29 Cord Building were declared National Historic Landmarks in 2005. Today, they showcase 130 years of auto manufacturing, especially thanks to the privilege of making the L-29 Cord, the first front-wheel-drive car in the U.S. What I really enjoyed about my visit is the fact that there are loads of informational signs in case you’re not familiar with the car brands or why they’re important, so even casual car lovers won’t feel out of place while there. 

DeKalb County Visitors Bureau

If it’s your first time in Auburn, making a pit stop at the Dekalb County Visitors Bureau is a must. Not only will the fine folks who work there help you with any questions you may have regarding attractions, dining, and where to stay, it’s an adorable place to visit. 

Here, you’ll find plenty of literature on the area’s hot spots and souvenirs to take home, too. 

Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum

Auburn Cord Duesenberg (ACD) Museum

The ACD Museum is another must-see when in town. It’s located right next to the National Auto & Truck Museum, so you can park in one place and visit both. Housed in the Auburn Automobile Company’s original headquarters in the 1930s, the museum is also a National Historic Landmark. It has three floors of vintage and classic cars from the 1890s through the 1990s, so there’s plenty to ooh and ahh over. 

During my visit, I was not only impressed with the pristine autos, I was in awe over the building’s preservation just as much. Its grand staircase is a beauty and worthy of taking a few photos on its steps. If you’re concerned younger children may not enjoy it, if they’re fans of miniature cars, you’ll have no problem keeping their attention here. 

Early Ford V-8 Foundation Museum

Early Ford V-8 Museum

Another must-visit is the Early Ford V-8 Foundation & Museum. With the motto of preserving and collecting the history, heritage, and products manufactured by the Ford Motor Company, it has a small niche by focusing its efforts on vehicles made between 1932 and 1953. While that may seem like a small timeline, I assure you the museum does a fine job of making its efforts large. 

With three individual areas to check out, I loved seeing the recreation of a 1940s Ford Service Garage, complete with everything it would need to keep a car running smoothly. If there was only one vehicle to mention, for me it’s the 1936 Ford Touring Sedan and its shiny stainless steel exterior. One of six cars built for the Allegany Ludlum Steel Company, they were created to incentivize salesman to compete for the top seller title so they could drive one for an entire year.