Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Now for Something Different: Cars of Cuba


 We all know about the cars in Cuba, the old American cars from the 1950s. They are everywhere, everywhere. In fact they have been made part of the Cuban patrimony, they cannot be exported. That’s fine, it would  have been really difficult to stuff one into the overhead bins, even on an Airbus 321.

But they are fun, and in Cienfuegos I had a chance to have lunch with a car mechanic and he told me all about how they do it. Apparently, when the Soviets began making cars in the 1950s they stole Chrysler straight six designs. So when the Soviets came and then left behind their Zils and Moskviches . . .

And according to the driver of our historic cab in Habana, there are also no automatic transmissions in Cuba, no parts to repair them. So everything that was automatic is now a three on the tree.

Condition, well, you’ll see, but I have to admit that I did not shoot the worse of them, the ones that are more bondo than metal.

Still and all, they are fun. Hope you enjoy!

There and here I'll play the game of trying to ID the cars (without using Google, which was not an option there). Tell me if I get stuff wrong, and I will.

1949 Oldsmobile, I think

1958 DeSoto

1954 Olds?

OK, I googled this one, I think it's a '49 Chevy

'54 Ford, everybody knows that. Cool color.

'54 Chevy

Willys??

'53 or '54 Plymouth?

1953 Chevy, I think. Love the colors especially with the building. I assume the car belongs to the hotel. This may have been my favorite car that I saw on the island.

'55 Chevy?

'54 Buick, I think

'56 Buick

1957 Chev. A lot of the cars are white and many, you will note are in colors Detroit never dreamed of

Like this '55(?)

Trifecta: '58 Plymouth, '59 Dodge, '57 Ford

'53 or '54 Chev in front of the Morro in Habana

1954 Merc. This was from our last night. Note Jim at right directing traffic. We had five cars.

Along the Malecon '58 Merc in front and, I think, a 1936 Ford to the right.

Linda taking a picture of me taking a picture of Linda in the Merc

1958 Plymouth, I believe.

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