Old Cars in China

Ford Garage

Since moving to Shanghai, I have spent a lot of spare time at "flea markets" scouring hundreds and hundreds of old family photo albums for pictures of old cars in China. It is an amazingly difficult task to find any old car pics.

Old car pictures are hard to come by for a couple of reasons. First and most obvious is that only the wealthiest families had a car before World War II, and the period after 1937 saw the Japanese occupation of much of China. The rise of the Communists to power in 1949 put an end to the availability and private ownership of cars for quite a long time afterwards.

Another reason is probably cultural. I have found that the Chinese both today and in the past like to take close portrait type photos. Very few photos are taken of objects or possessions. Some pictures are tourist landscapes or travel pics. Mostly they are posed portrait pictures.

This is a postcard of Nanjing Lu in Shanghai. This is a major east-west route through the city center. It is located along the north side of People's Square, formerly the racetrack in the pre-communist era.

Another postcard view of Nanjing Lu. The truck on the right appears to be one of the Model A armored cash trucks featured on another page on this site.

Looks like a Chevrolet.

This car is from Zhejiang Province.

Starting their motoring careers young!

Nice new Mercury!


Happiness is a Dodge!

A family of nine with a shiny new Plymouth!

More related information on Ford Garage:

  1. For more Model A & B related information, use the Site Search box at the top or bottom of this page.
  2. China Old Truck Scrapbook

May 2006
中国 上海