News of the Weird

Bits and pieces of the bizarre, the horrific and the puzzling collected from around the information highway so you don’t have to. Yer welcome.

Lithuanian couple dreams big with snow-made Ferrari

If local lockdown has you bored stiff, you can always follow this Lithuanian couple’s lead

A video by Storyful shows a snow-made Ferrari LaFerrari in the couple’s backyard. The footage was shot by Donata Bugiene and shows her husband working on the project, which took him approximately two days to finish before the final touches and the paint were applied.

The replica has accurate dimensions and even a striking red exterior finish made of “environmentally friendly paint,” as Fox6Now reports. The snow sculpture was made in the last days of January but given the country’s cold weather, it’s most likely still alive.

 “The Ferrari is a real size, made to the dimensions of the original Ferrari LaFerrari,” Donata Bugiene explained. “We decided that if you can’t buy it – you can build it yourself! Now no one can deny that a Ferrari is standing in our yard.”

According to TradingEconomics, the average monthly wage in Lithuania currently is around €1,454 per month or approximately $1,750 at the current exchange rates. If we assume the couple from Panevezys County earns the average for the country and that you can buy a LaFerrari for $1 million, it’ll take them almost 24 years to afford the supercar. And, of course, that’s true if they spend their full income to buy a Ferrari.

With only 500 examples built, the LaFerrari is one of the rarest and most expensive modern-day supercars. It’s probably safe to say the production run now amounts to 501 units thanks to this snow-made LaFerrari from Lithuania.

Source: The Best You Can Do In Face Of This Much Cold Is Make A Snow Ferrari (motor1.com)

Un-koala-fied to drive? 

A koala has been rescued after causing a five-car pileup while trying to cross a six-lane freeway in southern Australia.

Police said the crash in heavy Monday morning traffic in the city of Adelaide caused some injuries, but no one required an ambulance.

The animal’s rescuer said she got out of her car to investigate what had caused the pileup. Nadia Tugwell, with her coat in hand, teamed up with a stranger clutching a blanket in a bid to capture the marsupial. A concrete highway divider had blocked the koala’s crossing.

“The koala was absolutely not damaged in any way,” Tugwell said. “It was very active, but very calm.”

Once the koala was in her trunk, Tugwell drove to a gas station to turn the animal over to wildlife rescuers. In the interim, the koala was able to climb from the trunk into her SUV’s cabin.

“It decided to come to the front toward me, so I said, ‘OK, you stay here. I’ll get out,’” she said.

“It started sitting for a while on the steering wheel: (as if ) saying: ‘let’s go for a drive,’ and that’s when I started taking photos,” she added.

The koala later was released in a forest — well away from the freeway.

Source: Koala causes 5-car pileup in Australia, hitches a ride as it’s rescued | Autoblog

The car as mood ring

What does temperature-sensitive paint look like? Fonzie of DipYourCar knows his stuff, especially when applied to an Audi A4.

We’d be remiss not to mention that these crazy paint jobs aren’t everyone’s cup of tea – yeah, big surprise. However, before you click away in distaste, the science involved in such a complex paint job is actually really interesting.

It’s probably been a while since you’ve seen a mood ring, but the paint featured in the video here functions using the same principle. Just like the ring, the automotive application involves the use of thermotropic liquid crystals which produce different colors at various temperatures. Unlike most of the heat-sensitive paint jobs you’ve seen before which use thermochromic pigments, this variant is much more sensitive – producing a greater range of color.

After a base coat of plastidip was applied, the team sprayed on eight coats of the special paint to produce the desired effect. Right from the moment it left the spray booth, the car began to transform into a kaleidoscope of color. Just as you’d expect, the finish produces a pseudo thermal camera effect and changes right before your eyes when you interact with it.

As cool as the end result looks, Fonzie was quick to mention that this is simply a fun test to see what is possible; for long-term use, he said it would be advisable to put down another layer of sealer to protect the finish from regular wear and tear. Semantics aside, it was certainly impressive to see the mood ring effect on a car. 

Source: Temperature-Sensitive Paint Makes Audi A4 Look Wild (motor1.com)

Bitcoin car buyers? Some of those youngins’ were outta of the starting gate long before you were 

Georgia car dealer Christopher Basha was way ahead of Elon Musk in embracing bitcoin as a currency for selling vehicles.

Basha said he learned about cryptocurrency from a roommate who mined bitcoin. “Someone bought a pizza with bitcoin,” he said. “Buying a car with bitcoin didn’t seem that crazy.”

He began accepting bitcoin payments in 2015, but no customers were interested. “I almost forgot about it,” he said.

In 2017, bitcoin prices surged, and one customer used the cryptocurrency to buy four Kias for a total of more than $150,000, Basha said. Bitcoin payments have been picking up since late last year, with prices rallying.

Basha is one of a small group of auto dealers who have been accepting bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies from customers well ahead of Tesla Inc’s revelation that it had bought $1.5 billion of the cryptocurrency and would soon accept it as a form of payment for cars.

Dealers said accepting cryptocurrency is a good marketing and branding tool. But it is still a niche business. Price volatility and the absence of trusted banks and other financial intermediaries make bitcoin payments a risk for dealers who are not tech savvy.

Basha, the Kia dealer, said he converts bitcoin into cash immediately upon receipt because he believes it risky for a company the size of his to hold such a volatile asset. But it does take several minutes to turn bitcoin into U.S. dollars on a payment platform, which occasionally leads to losses averaging $300 to $400 on each transaction due to price movements.

Once, he forgot his password to send bitcoin from one account to another to make the dollar conversion after receiving payments from a customer. “I was freaked out. … There is no middleman who’s going to come save you.”

Pietro Frigerio, a Lamborghini dealer in Irvine, California, said when bitcoin prices surged in 2017, his store sold 20 cars in a month. But during the latest rally, he has not seen much increase in bitcoin payments.

“People are waiting for exchange rates to go up further,” said Frigerio, who also sells other premium luxury sports cars like Bugatti and McLaren.

He said customers who bought cars with bitcoin have something in common: They are young people who have a strong belief in virtual currency.

Source: Buy a car with bitcoin? Some car dealers have been years ahead of Tesla | Autoblog

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