Photo by Tony Robertson. Used by permission.
OUR CADILLAC kick has prompted Tony Robertson to share this photo of a 1958 convertible that he recalls often seeing around Havana. Certainly a pleasant sight!
And that reminds me of this November 1959 account by Harry F. Byrd Jr., editor of the Winchester, Virginia, Star (and later a U.S. senator). Part of a diary-style report on changes in post-revolution Cuba, it reveals a sudden drop in Cadillac values after the Castro takeover:
"Another incident demonstrates to what an extent business conditions have deteriorated. A friend of mine sought to purchase a Chevrolet, which was priced at $4,900. The dealer told him that if he would take a Cadillac convertible Eldorado (priced at $12,?50) he would sell it to him for $4,700. The dealer explained that if he did not immediately get rid of the Cadillac (a pet hate of the revolutionaries) that with conditions worsening he probably would never be able to sell it."
For a moment, I thought the car described by Byrd might be the same Cadillac photographed by Tony. But then I realized that the pictured convertible is a Series 62, not the rarer Eldorado Biarritz convertible (the Eldorado coupe model was the Seville, and the four-door the Brougham). Biarritz production was held to just 815 in 1958 and 1,320 in 1959.
We can only wonder where that Eldorado Biarritz went, and where it might be today.
Read Byrd's full account here.