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Customs Cuban Cars

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by mcmopar, Jan 23, 2015.

  1. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 27,332


    I'd have to say that he hit it exactly right. Those cars have been band aided back together for the past 50 years with who knows what. Half of them probably have drive trains that we wouldn't recognize on a bet along with many many patch panels in place.

    There no doubt will be some rubes pay big bucks for some "classic American cars from Cuba" that get real disappointment when the cars show up on their doorsteps.
  2. LOL I started mine girl out with midnight rides on the bike and a hot rodded '56 F truck. She is a good wrench to this day but doesn't get it at all.

    my oldest granddaughter (who we basically raised) on the other hand is a hot rodder to the core. She has her own brand of rodding and is dating a guy who does the off road rock crawling thing in old flat fender willys vehicles. But she is the main motor person on the outings and is forever dragging him around to the local cruises where they live or the drag strip. I'm so damned proud of her. ;)

    Well band-aided is a good analysis but when I was there in the early '90s most of the old hoppties still had original drivetrains in them or at least American drivetrains. We have had a trade embargo with them since gawd knows when but they still had good trade relations with Mexico and other latin countries. They could get what they needed to reman about everything on the car, and were wizards at adapting pieces from wrecks to suit their purposes.

    There may be some cars with Russian drivetrains but I will just about bet that more of the cars will be more recognizable then one would expect.
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2015
  3. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 9,269

    Rusty O'Toole

    When Communism came in, in 1960, it became illegal for a Cuban to buy a car. Any that were already in the country OK, but no new ones. That meant no new car dealers, no parts department, no parts stores except official government stores which meant, no parts.

    Owners of pre 1960 cars kept them on the road as best they could. Some were put away and garaged, and survive in good shape. Most were run into the ground and kept running with whatever parts they could scrounge.

    A real heap is worth thousands of $$$ as long as it runs. This situation will change as the US embargo is dropped and trade loosens up.

    But, the embargo is not the reason for no new cars. Who buys American cars these days anyway? The reason is the 1960 model Socialist government.
  4. Rusty
    The embargo meant now new anything from several countries around the world.

    There were car parts there but they were very expensive. There are two classes of Taxi there today for instance, there are the rattle traps that we normally see photos of and there are nice cars in pristine condition, the average joe uses the rattle traps and the wealthy ride in the nice cars.

    The reason in part that the cars are in the condition that they are in is because of poverty, the people are good at scabbing things together because poor people have poor ways.

    Hopefully no one will take offense at this, because to some it is going to sound both religious and political but when I was there with my Cuban friend I was talking with his grandmother, she asked me if I knew what Americans and Cubans had in common. I said no and she said, "The second coming of Christ and the death of Castro." Yea I know has nothing to do with cars or the thread at all but I have always chuckled when I think about it.

    Here is a thought about Cuban cars and cars in general. I was just over checking the classifieds and there are 3,570 ads posted in the cars for sale. We should probably use those up before we start importing cars from Cuba.
  5. Jason455
    Joined: Jun 21, 2004
    Posts: 515


    Looks like they only have convertibles and 4-doors
  6. I second that porknbeaner let's get the ones already here rolling.
  7. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 9,269

    Rusty O'Toole

    The embargo prevented them from buying from the US, it did not prevent them buying from any other country such as Japan, Korea, Europe or any other car making country.

    Who buys American cars anyway? Even in America, people buy lots of import cars and outside the US and Canada you seldom see an American car.

    It was a combination of poverty and Cuban government policy, not the US embargo that prevented Cubans from buying new cars. I'm not surprised this is not well known, I only figured it out myself a few months ago.
    Joined: Jan 13, 2004
    Posts: 2,757


    A 1950 Dodge more door with a Izusu Diesel out of a forklift is not desirable to me, call me a car snob if you want.
  9. It's certainly going to be interesting when internet access becomes widespread in Cuba. How many of those car owners are potential HAMBers? They'll be attempting to put a whole new spin on what's traditional.:D:eek:
    HOTRODPRIMER likes this.
  10. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 9,269

    Rusty O'Toole

    Last edited: Jan 23, 2015
  11. fordpatina
    Joined: May 12, 2012
    Posts: 1,226


    cuban cars are scrap all rusted out mexican car are the best
  12. stimpy
    Joined: Apr 16, 2006
    Posts: 3,547


    I doubt any of them will come here unless they get some stupid money for them as to them its like a gold bar to them and unless they can buy one ( which they cannot because of Castros laws ) they will not part with what they have , and until Cuba allows the citizens to buy a personal vehicle most will stay in the familys that own them as most are used for cabs or transportation to the cities , its not like russia where the citizens had to get permission then were on a list and had to wait . it was a matter of what they could own ( and transfering the ownership was only allowed to other family members ) , and also Cuba's ecomony is in a bad shape so many of there citizens will not be able to afford a new $4-5000 car from china or india to replace it , not even a Skoda from Russia .

    actually I think parts sales from here might actually rise a little and cause us some problems in finding things .
  13. 56sedandelivery
    Joined: Nov 21, 2006
    Posts: 6,296


    I looked through the "link" at all the cars, and was surprised to see a CORVETTE, even though it was blowing smoke, probably from a 4 cylinder diesel engine. They are not going to show photos of "junkers", and there are far more of them than anything else. And, an island surrounded by salt water is't the best environment for any car or truck. Here's something I do find interesting; they have DRAG RACING in Cuba on a couple of old military airfields; just do a YouTube.Com search for "Drag Racing in Cuba". There is a 56 Chevrolet with a "homebuilt" hood and NO glass windows, but most of the cars are small imports from who knows where. Cuba can keep all the cars they have, we have far more of a selection here, not to mention parts availability. I am Butch/56sedandelivery.
  14. Gary Addcox
    Joined: Aug 28, 2009
    Posts: 2,351

    Gary Addcox

    I agree with you, Chris. Since the internet came about, people have seen rides sell for big money, and sometimes think their undriven cars sitting behind the barn are worth the same. But, you are right, Chris. America still has tons of good stuff, maybe not '32s or '29s, but they are out there. When are you bringing that '29 to Top Notch ?
  15. dan c
    Joined: Jan 30, 2012
    Posts: 2,126

    dan c

    the first one i saw was a '53 chevy, painted orange and white with hyundai engine...One thing i wonder about these cars is how rusty they are from the salt-air climate; or is that a non-issue?
  16. BamaMav
    Joined: Jun 19, 2011
    Posts: 4,330

    from Berry, AL

    I doubt many, if any, of what Cuba has will be allowed to be exported here for a long time, if ever. There will be deals cut to allow Cuban Cigars and Rum probably, but cars will be far down the list. They may allow parts to be imported from the US to keep the cars going, as like was said above they are considered a national treasure. They are memories for the families that own them of better times in Cuba, before the Castro's took over, one of the few things they were allowed to keep when communism took over.

    As to Cuban's getting the internet, they might, but it will be heavily censored just like China's. If there are hackers in Cuba, and there probably are, a uncensored version will get through to some. The thing that will affect the Cuban people more than anything will be an influx of money from the US. Then they may be allowed to import US vehicles for themselves and trash the old cobbled up ones that they have now, but I wouldn't hold my breath for that to happen.

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