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HindustanTimes Mon,22 Sep 2014

World

Fidel Castro's former limos reborn as Havana taxicabs
AP
Havana, June 20, 2014
First Published: 21:42 IST(20/6/2014)
Last Updated: 02:32 IST(21/6/2014)

In a former life they were the "comandante's" cars: A fleet of black, boxy, Soviet-made limousines that for years were at the disposal of Fidel Castro.

Today the limos have been decommissioned and repurposed as Havana taxi cabs, at the service of tourists who want a little slice of history to go with their ride across town.

The cars were produced by Russian manufacturers GAZ and ZIL in the 1960s and '70s. Those sent to Cuba reportedly included a ZIL-111 convertible model that was the first of its kind to roll off the assembly line, a personal gift to Castro from Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev.

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Taxi driver Moises Suarez navigates the Soviet-made limousine that he rents from the government in Havana, Cuba. (AP Photo)


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Tourists from Barcelona, Spain take a picture through the window of a Soviet-made limousine taxi cab that was once part of Fidel Castro's fleet in front of Revolution Plaza in Havana, Cuba. (AP Photo)


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A Soviet-made limousine taxi cab sits parked in Havana, Cuba. In a former life they were the "comandante's" cars: A fleet of black, boxy, Soviet-made limousines that for years were at the disposal of the presidency in Fidel Castroís Cuba. (AP Photo)


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Taxi driver Moises Suarez turns on the radio inside the Soviet-made limousine taxi cab that once belonged to Fidel Castro's fleet which he rents from the government in Havana, Cuba. (AP Photo)


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Taxi driver Moises Suarez drives past Revolution Plaza the Soviet-made limousine that once was part of Fidel Castro's fleet, which he rents from the government, in Havana, Cuba. (AP Photo)


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