When owning a supercar isn't enough

STEPHEN OTTLEY
Last updated 11:59 01/04/2014
A gold vinyl wrapped Ferrari 458 Italia in London.
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CUSTOM SUPER CAR: A gold vinyl wrapped Ferrari 458 Italia in London.

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There used to be a time when owning a supercar was enough for most celebrities to feel special - not any more.

These days buying a Ferrari, Lamborghini or Porsche is just the beginning and to really make them special you need to cover them in the most outrageous colours possible.

Iraqi kickboxing world champion Riyadh Al-Azzawi is the latest celebrity to join this craze. His Ferrari 458 Spider was spotted on a London street in its new golden finish.

For most people a half-million-dollar supercar would be enough, but Al-Azzawi spent another £4000 (NZ$7686) on the golden vinyl wrap.

Al-Azzawi is one of a growing number of celebrities that are investing in the vinyl wrap to give their car extra bling.

As the name suggests, a vinyl wrap is effectively a giant sticker that covers the car to give it a new look without a drop of paint. Not only is it cheaper than paint, it also allows the owner to change their mind and give their car a fresh look whenever the mood takes them.

Rapper Chris Brown is a big fan of wraps. He's wrapped a Lamborghini Gallardo in a white, blue, yellow and red colour scheme and finished his Lamborghini Aventador in a white, black and red camouflage.

He's also gone the traditional method and had his Lamborghini Gallardo airbrushed to look like a World War Two fighter plane. He's also had his Porsche Panamera customised with his own style of graffiti.

Justin Bieber's chrome Fisker KarmaJustin Bieber is another big wrapper. His favourite choice appears to be matte black because he's covered a Cadillac CTS Coupe, Smart car, Range Rover and even Mercedes-Benz Sprinter van in it. But he's also wrapped an Audi R8 in leopard print and a Fisker Karma in chrome.

Another wrapper is US rapper Flo Rida who last year unveiled a Bugatti Veyron wrapped in gold and it runs on 24 inch, 24 carat gold Forgiato rims.

But perhaps the most outrageous wrap belongs to Canadian music producer Deadmau5. He's finished his Ferrari 458 in a blue and rainbow tribute to YouTube video hit Nyan Cat.

Le Bron James' Lamborghini AventadorBut it's not just musicians that like to be different, as other athletes are also getting in on the act. To celebrate the launch of his latest Nike shoe, basketball star LeBron James had a Lamborghini Aventador finished in the same tropical print as his shoe.

In Europe, Lapo Elkann, the brother of Fiat chairman John Elkann, has earned a reputation as one of the most stylish men in the car industry. And his car collection reflects that.

He took his love of jeans to new heights when he painted his Ferrari 599 two shades of blue and trimmed the seats with denim from his favourite jeans.

Since then he's added a Ferrari 458 Italia with camouflaged exterior and interior - even the brake calipers have been painted to match.

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He's obviously a fan of the military look because he also has a Jeep Grand Cherokee with camouflage exterior and a Fiat 500 Abarth with matte military green paint and black denim interior.

Elkann is credited with playing a significant role in the launch of Ferrari's ''Tailor Made'' program that allows customers to alter most aspects of the car's finish, including materials and colours.

He helped launch that program at the 2011 Frankfurt motor show when he unveiled his second denim-inspired Ferrari. This time a dark blue California with denim interior.

Flo Rida's gold Bugatti

-Fairfax News Australia

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