Watch this time-lapse Lego build of life-size 1964 Ford Mustang

To be specific, it's a model of a first year Mustang coupe, known as a 1964 1/2 model. From LEGOLAND Florida Resort where it's on permanent display:

Made out of 194,900 LEGO and DUPLO® bricks, the giant model (named #BrickPony) took approximately 1,200 hours to assemble by a team of veteran Master Builders at LEGO Systems, Inc., in Enfield, Conn.

#BrickPony measures more than 15 feet long, nearly 6 feet wide and more than 4 feet tall. It weighs 1,712 pounds, of which 960 pounds are LEGO bricks and 752 pounds is its aluminum chassis.

A few surprises were added under its hood, including a virtual horn and the sounds of a real Mustang engine — a first for a life-size LEGO vehicle — plus working headlights and taillights.

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Crash test: Nissan sold in Mexico vs. Nissan sold in USA

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Safety standards matter. The cheapest Nissan sold in Mexico, the Tsuru, and the cheapest Nissan sold in the USA, the Versa, were driven into one another at 40 miles per hour. You don't want to be in either car, but you definitely don't want to be in the Tsuru.

A car-to-car test between a 2015 Nissan Tsuru, the least expensive sedan sold by Nissan in Mexico, and a 2016 Nissan Versa, the least expensive sedan sold by Nissan in the United States. With a 50% overlap and each vehicle travelling at 40 mph (64 km/h) the test highlights the significant differences in safety standards between these two baseline models sold by the same manufacturer in different markets.

Wired reports that the Tsuru (basically a 1990s Sentra) is being put to pasture soon, and that Mexico is toughening its car safety laws. Read the rest

Police bumper that deploys a net to snag escapee's tires during car chase

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The Grappler is a device that unfurls from a police car's front bumper during a car chase to snag the perp's tires and lock up their wheels. Of course, the fleeing suspect's car may be outfitted with its own James Bond-esque auto tech like a smoke screen or caltrop release mechanism.

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Ultra-rich people in NYC demand apartments with (gasp) driveways

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The hot new amenity that NYC developers are building into their plans for luxury apartment buildings is a porte-cochère, aka a fancy driveway. In fact, in Manhattan an opulent private drive may actually add more value to a new property than using that same real estate for additional living space. Then again, why choose! From Bloomberg:

The trend towards motor courts has accelerated notably in the last two years, according to Kent Security’s Alon Alexander, who has seen a major uptick in inquiries from luxury developers on how best to incorporate the feature in an architectural brief. They’re driven, of course, by twin concerns: privacy and security.

There’s also a less concrete allure to motor courts: in a city where developers want to wring maximum value from every square foot, there’s an extravagance in leaving such a large space empty. It tacitly telegraphs a developer’s largesse and indulgence, at least according to Alon Alexander’s twin brother, Oren. He is a sales executive for 565 Broome. “A regular developer might squeeze a retail site, or extra amenities like a larger lobby, from that space but a driveway is the definition of luxury,” Oren says by cellphone, “It’s space where you don’t typically get it.” Jasmine Mir, CMO of Corcoran Sunshine, puts its more simply. “Buying a penthouse at the top of a building is one thing, but the sense of extravagance and luxury associated with having space at street level in a congested place like New York? It gives an amazing sense of wow!

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Maserati Hearse

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People are dying for a ride in Ellena Funeral Car's Maserati Hearse:

Multifunctional steering wheel - Dual-zone automatic climate control - Windshield wiper with rain sensor - Body in fiberglass - Hydraulic Alzabara - Interior lighting LED - Stainless steel cladding and imitation leather boating - Cross removable stainless steel - Hooks door wreaths - Audio engineer - Metallic paint choice

Optional accessories: - Opening the tailgate automatic - Platform Automatic - Parking sensors - Tinted windows

Maserati Hearse (via Uncrate)

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Tesla announces full self-driving hardware on all models

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Tesla released a video of a commute from home to office, including parking as a demonstration of its fully self-driving hardware. "The person in the driver's seat is only there for legal reasons. He is not doing anything. The car is driving itself."

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How to get out your driveway when another car is blocking it

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We've all experienced the frustration and delay caused by thoughtless motorists who block driveways and parking spots with their vehicles. The key thing is to remain calm, take a deep breath, and don't lose your temper. In this video, a driver shows how easy it is to deal with a blocked driveway if you just stop to think a moment about the problem. Read the rest

Real life clown car of commuters in Russia

I'm glad the fellow found room for his accordion. Video titled "Bashkir team goes to work."

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Controversial road diet reduced accidents, say scientists

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Los Angeles is a car town, so it's controversial to promote "road diets," a form of roadway reconfiguration intended to slow cars and reduce collisions, especially with cyclists and pedestrians. Scientists reviewed data from one controversial road diet and found that crashes were cut in half, and unsafe speed crashes dropped to zero.

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US endorses self-driving cars, with a catch: Feds want to control tech approval, not states

Lexus SUV Google prototype autonomous vehicle in Mountain View, 2015.  REUTERS

Federal auto safety regulators today said that self-driving cars “will save time, money and lives,” but also sent a clear signal that they want the power to inspect and approve technology before it hits the highways, rather than each U.S. state setting its own safety standards.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said on a press call today that a new federal premarket approval system "would require a lot more upfront discussion, dialogue and staffing on our part."

The government's statement today is big news for Uber, Google, Apple, and other Silicon Valley firms pouring millions of R&D dollars into figuring out how to swap human drivers for smart machines, or at least allow us to share control in “semiautonomous” setups.

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Man ticketed for driving 88mph in his DeLorean

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Essex, England police ticketed Nigel Mills, 55, for speeding in his DeLorean. He was apparently going 88mph (although his top speed was 89mph). Mills insists that he "wasn't trying to time travel."

"Me and the rest of my family enjoyed the Back to the Future films," he said about his purchase of the DeLorean. "When I’m out in it a few people recognise it, they slow down and take pictures – drivers take pictures out of their windows or try to film you and I get approached at petrol stations.”

Mills's ticket was tossed out of court when the two officers who cited him didn't show up. Probably because Mills erased them from existence.

(The Guardian) Read the rest

The Cat from Outer Space

Movie trailer for The Cat from Outer Space (1978), directed by Norman Tokar and starring Ken Berry, Sandy Duncan, Harry Morgan, and Roddy McDowall. I predict a remake in 3... 2... 1....

If you're, er, curious, you can watch it on Amazon Video: The Cat from Outer Space

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Jailed driver used frying pan as replacement steering wheel

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A fellow in Adelaide, Australia was arrested for several traffic offenses including using a modified (and magic-markered) frying pan as a steering wheel. From the South Australia Police:

Further checks revealed the car was unregistered and uninsured and had recently been defected and the defect label had been removed.

The 32-year-old from Adelaide was charged with driving unregistered, uninsured, drive contrary to defect, remove defect label, alter number plate and breach of bail. He has been bailed to appear in the Adelaide Magistrates Court on 11 October.

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Jeepneys: souped-up rides from the Philippines

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Jeepneys are the unofficial national vehicle of the Philippines. Originally made from modified surplus US jeeps after World War II by companies like Sarao, they developed into a colorful and stylized form of public transportation. Read the rest

What happens if you try to steal a Rolls-Royce hood ornament?

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This anti-theft feature has apparently been standard on all Rolls-Royce models since 2004. Also, the hood ornament has a name: The Spirit of Ecstasy.

(via Geekologie)

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How not to get stuck in traffic

Of course, the best way to not get stuck in traffic is not to drive anywhere. But if you must, see the above.

And if the topic of traffic piques your interest, BB pal Tom Vanderbilt wrote the book on the matter: Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (and What It Says About Us)

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Failing car alarm has a great beat

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