A 2017 Infiniti Q60 was the first new U.S.-spec car to be registered and driven in Cuba in 58 years.
The idea of travelling to Cuba with a brand-new Infiniti belonged to Alfonso Albaisa, Infiniti executive design director, who is of Cuban heritage.
“It was a monumental task,” Albaisa said of his team’s mission to register the Q60 in Cuba before touring the streets of Havana in late 2016.
“So when we finally saw it pull out of the container and onto the ground outside of Havana, the passion in that car – the power, the shape, the sculpture – it is something very dear to me.”
Unsurprisingly, the “Dynamic Sunstone Red” paint and modern, flowing shape of the Q60 caught the eyes of Cuban locals of all ages. “It struck me, how much they love the automobile,” said Albaisa.
Having left as a child, Albaisa remembered little of his birthplace, and experienced Cuba exclusively through photos and stories until his recent trip. Upon seeing the building architecture commissioned by his ancestors, he felt a connection to the design flair of his family which was undoubtedly passed on in his own design DNA.
Albaisa’s great-uncle, Max Borges-Recio, designed several famous buildings including the Tropicana and Club Nautico—both buildings which he was able to park his Q60 outside of while taking in the beauty of the mid-century designs.