On the heels of the lifted trade embargo on Cuba, Cuba has announced the production of the islands first homegrown automobile and invited Motor Trend contributors to take their pre-production model sedans, the Mofeta, for a test drive in the Cuban countryside.
The Mofeta features an air cooled 550 cubic centimeter engine derived from a popular Honda motorcycle. The transmission is an original Cuban design featuring O-ring chains running from the engine shaft to the right rear wheel. The engine power ratings are not yet known but speculation from experts says it could have the output of a large, well fed pony.
The next issue of Motor Trend has yet to arrive so the test drivers are remaining elusive about the specific features and conclusions on the Cuban car’s performance although general consensus may be hard to come to since only one of the five Motor Trend test drivers is accounted for. Sources who wish to remain anonymous say that the other test drivers were vocal about their bad opinions of Cuba’s first car. They went missing, however, after a test drive in the countryside while being escorted by the Cuban military so their opinion cannot be confirmed.
The only remaining test driver, who spoke over the phone from his Cuban hotel and who doesn’t want to be identified, claims that the Mofeta is built as an economical people’s car so some of the features are basic, although he was quick to clarify that basic doesn’t mean bad. “The features of this car are glorious!” He claims the ingenious airbag system consists of a flock of geese kept inside the car. Whenever the driver sees a frontal impact coming, he must whip his arm wildly around the car, find a goose, and hold it in front of his face. “It’s a great system. Down is really soft,” says the source.He claims the ingenious airbag system consists of a flock of geese kept inside the car. Click To Tweet
The source explained some more features of the car in detail. “It has bucket seats and they are really comfortable. They do slide just a little and they don’t have any back support since they are just rusty metal buckets turned upside down. It’s, uh, a glorious seating position that leaves other cars weeping at their own inferiority.”
The stereo is quite simply a Cuban folk singer who the government pays to ride along with you while singing traditional Cuban melodies. While plans are in the works to import the Mofeta to America, It’s not clear yet if the Cuban folk singer comes with the American models. The source says that decision will ultimately be up to the U.S. Department of Immigration.
The wheels of the Mofeta apparently come from a popular Cuban wheelbarrow. “The wheels are unique because they are readily available. This is important because the wheels fly off a lot.” He reiterated that it’s not because the car actually has bad build quality. “No, no, no, it’s a glorious car. It’s just that Cuba’s roads are so bumpy that the lug nuts come off a lot.” He then clarified that statement, “Not that Cuba has bad roads, they have glorious infrastructure. It’s uh, sabotage by people who hate Cuba.”
The car is really quite good, says the source, which he says isn’t surprising since Cuba is known for their astonishingly good manufacturing process and fine automobiles. “If someone from a government somewhere held a gun to my head and told me to drive one and say good things about it, I most definitely would. Not that I would have to have someone hold a gun to my head to say good things, I mean, it’s a glorious car. Clearly.”
The Mofeta is expected to be imported into the United States as early as May 2015 if it manages to clear EPA regulations and safety inspections.