For over half a century, Havana’s roads have been jammed with classic cars from Pontiacs, Studebakers, Oldsmobiles, Chevrolets and Soviet cars. But that may change with the recent reversal in American policy towards Cuba.
Old American cars are a common sight the streets of Havana. Fidel Castro imposed a law after assuming power in 1959 that prevented anyone without government permission from importing foreign automobilesIt is estimated that up to 60,000 American cars from the 1950s era are still running in Cuba. The 1959 law that Fidel Castro implemented also banned the import of car parts, which meant repairs of American cars and replacements often had ingenious and creative qualities. In 2011, Cuban people were allowed to buy new cars provided if had permission from the authorities but with almost no new imports, the problem is that there is a waiting list of five years. Tourists often visit Cuba for the opportunity to admire and ride in classic cars.
The classic American cars are usually used as taxis to shuttle tourists around Cuba. Taxis with tailfins are a common site in Cuba, as the styling has been a popular during the 1950s before the embargo against Havana was imposed.
Cuba seems to be totally frozen in time…