President Barack Obama's surprise announcement that the United States would restore diplomatic relations with Cuba has led to hopes that the economic embargo that has been in place since 1962 will finally be lifted.

The vintage American automobiles that rattle down Havana's boulevards are one of the most visible signs of the trade embargo. The 1950s Oldsmobiles, Cadillacs and Studebakers have become icons. Until new regulations were put in place in 2011, people could only sell cars built before the 1959 revolution.

In this gallery, IBTimesUK looks at some of the vintage cars, long vanished from US streets, that can be seen on the road in Havana.

Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
Drivers of vintage cars wait for clients in HavanaReuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A 1956 Buick convertibleDesmond Boylan/Reuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A 1957 FordDesmond Boylan/Reuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A 1952 FordDesmond Boylan/Reuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
The spare wheel over at the back of a vintage FordDesmond Boylan/Reuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A 1952 BuickDesmond Boylan/Reuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A 1952 Cadillac convertibleDesmond Boylan/Reuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
Taxi drivers wait for customers beside US-made vintage convertiblesDesmond Boylan/Reuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A 1957 Chevrolet Bel-Air convertibleDesmond Boylan/Reuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A 1956 ChevroletDesmond Boylan/Reuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A 1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Sunliner convertibleDesmond Boylan/Reuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A 1958 Ford Edsel convertibleLuis Acosta/AFP
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A 1955 Buick RoadmasterDesmond Boylan/Reuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A man refuels his pink 1952 ChevroletDesmond Boylan/Reuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A 1952 Oldsmobile 98 convertibleDesmond Boylan/Reuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A 1954 FordDesmond Boylan/Reuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A 1954 ChevroletRodrigo Arangua/AFP
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A 1950s Chevrolet used as a taxi gets a push in downtown HavanaClaudia Daut/Reuters
Vintage American cars Havana Cuba
A 1952 Ford MercuryDesmond Boylan/Reuters