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The Evora GTE is the most powerful Lotus to date, making 444 horsepower with a 3.5-liter v6, but track-bred performance isn’t quite enough to make it pop.
Instead Lotus signed a deal with rapper/producer Swizz Beatz to collaborate on a special line of cars that have hiphop swag. This isn’t the first time an automaker resorted to the rap community for extra buzz, as Funkmaster Flex and Ford had a tie-up earlier in the decade.
Lotus chose the Alvin Ailey’s Opening Night Gala to show off their chrome-adorned special edition Evora GTE. Aside from serous horsepower, the car gets an automated manual transmission and carbon fiber throughout the body, good for shaving off anther 231 pounds.
Despite being the only example in the world, the Maybach Exelero has been around the block a few times. First concieved as a concept car for Fulda Tires (who wanted to use the vehicle for tire testing), the Exelero then appeared in a Jay-Z video.
Since then, it has fallen into the hands of a private owner and stayed out of the hip-hop limelight, until earlier in the year when hip-hop mogul Birdman (aka Bryan Williams), responsible for launching the careers of music stars like Lil’ Wayne and Drake, claimed to have purchased the car.
According to a report by MotorAuthority, Birdman has yet to pay for the car, leaving its current owner high and dry. Birdman currently owns a rare Maybach Landaulet and a Bugatti Veyron, so the Exelero’s asking price of $8 million, while steep, isn’t too far removed from Birdman’s snack bracket.
Nevertheless, not paying up is still considered bad form, and we won’t really know until we see Birdman bragging about his newest acquisition online or in one of his videos.
[Source: Motor Authority]
Kanye West is a prolific consumer of Mercedes-Benz vehicles, having been spotted in everything from Maybachs to SLR Stirling Moss Editions and all points in between.
While West is now famous for taking a blowtorch and an angle grinder to a Maybach in the video for his new single “Otis” (in collaboration with fellow aficionado Jay-Z), videos of West buying his first G550 SUV recently surfaced via hip-hop music video production house Creative Control.
The clip appears to date back to 2002 when West, having just rapped on Jay-Z’s landmark album “The Blueprint 2″, went out and purchased the G-Wagen to replace his ML430. The video is interlaced with samples from “Otis”, suggesting that the footage has been kicking around for some time. Kanye even bragged about his G500 being his “favorite toy” on a mixtape released in 2003 – but the clip is still a cool retrospective at Kanye just as he was on the cusp of fame. Furthermore, the salesman even suggests that Kanye check out “the next car we’re getting – the Maybach”.
Rapper and music impresario Birdman is the finest example of the American dream – even someone of questionable literacy can become rich enough to afford a Bugatti Veyron thanks to hard work and capitalize on certain “market inefficiencies” when distributing products that are only available at your local street-corner pharmacy.
Despite Birdman’s love of premium products, the Bugatti Veyron was at one time the domain of only the most obnoxiously wealthy, counting Arab oil shieks, inherited wealth and Simon Cowell as its owners. Bugatti’s CEO even remarked that he did not want rappers to purchase the Veyron, but his plans to control who owns a Veyron have gone awry. Birdman made a video over the summer showing him taking delivery of his Bugatti, decked out in Birdman’s signature all-red colorway, a nod to his supposed affiliation with the Bloods street gang.
Now Birdman has a new single, imaginatively titled “Fire Flame”. The plot is rather de rigueur for the genre, with Birdman rapping outside an awful faux-French Chateau (dubbed “Stunna Island”), getting his head shaved with a straight razor, literally burning money, sipping Cristal, meeting with Korean and Cuban organized crime figures and most importantly, squiring a legion of breast-implant equipped models in his famous Veyron, with a Louisiana vanity plate bearing the word “Fire” on it.
Once the proletariat are able to obtain a luxury good, it is arguably a commodity, and nobody is more sensitive to that than the people charged with selling Bugattis. We can’t wait to see what they have planned next to ensure this never happens again.
Hit the jump to see the video