Yes, Havana is a city where the time has stopped, a place where you can really see interesting examples of the classic American cars that people still drive on the streets.
Today, on the roads in Cuba you can see Russian, French and Asian vehicles, but also Chevrolets, Buicks, Chryslers, Plymouths and a lot of other American classic cars, mostly from the late ‘50s. And they are still used every day. Many of them are far from the original, but the Cubans found creative ways to keep them in working condition even without the access to the original parts.
The story began back in 1959.
By that time Cuba, especially Havana, was one of the favorite places among the richest Americans, a place where they spent their money on glamorous cars and entertainment in the elite hotels. But this was the year the radical Fidel Castro became the chief of the government and the USA started a complete embargo against Cuba in the early ‘60s.
This means that in the past 55 years, the residents of Cuba could drive cars that happen to be in this colorful country in that moment, as well as occasional new European or Asian cars, although it was hard to get them in Cuba.
But the cars that were already there, especially the American ones, are those of the nicest period of the automotive industry. When today we have the same opportunity to see them moving, we have the opportunity to find ourselves in the choreography that leaves you breathless.
To have the opportunity to drive together with so many Cadillacs, Studebakers and Buicks of the most beautiful American car era is really possible only in Cuba.
Therefore, we can safely say that there is no greater Museum of American classic cars than the streets of Cuba.
But, in Cuba you can also find exotic cars that are abandoned and have given up. This is normal, because due to the isolation and low living standards, the people of Cuba cannot keep them well.
However, due to the lifting of the sanctions by the United States, with the opening of Cuba to the world and the close end of the isolation, it is possible that the Cubans will take these cars away from the streets and replace them with some new, modern, gray and faceless cars. However, we hope that now it would be easier for the Cubans to take care of them and they will not give up on these cars so easily, the cars that faithfully served for more than 55 years.
Otherwise, only the photographs will remain to witness for them.