The infrastructure of NFT technology continues to expand far beyond the realm of art, with the world of SUV and sports cars the latest to adopt the blockchain.
Alfa Romeo, the iconic Italian luxury carmaker, has confirmed that it will use non-fungible tokens to monitor and store maintenance records for its new Tonale sports utility vehicles on the blockchain.
The Tonale is Alfa Remeo’s “first SUV on the market” that will come loaded with an NFT digital certificate, which the company claims will increase the vehicle’s “residual value.”NFTs are non-replaceable digital assets that are verified and stored using blockchain technology, making it difficult or impossible to alter, hack, or bypass the system.
Alfa Romeo’s Unique SUV Tech
So? You may believe that “blockchain” is the hottest marketing catchword this year. The upcoming Super Bowl has already been dubbed the “Crypto Bowl” by some media organizations, owing to a host of multimillion-dollar ads from Binance, Coinbase Global, and FTX.
However, some implementations of cryptocurrency have a significant possibility to disrupt the status quo than others. Alfa Romeo’s NFT advancement, on the other hand, is unique in that it makes practical application of automation.
Total crypto market cap at $1.98 trillion in the daily chart | Source: TradingView.com
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How does this latest gizmo operate? According to Francesco Calcara, Alfa Romeo’s global marketing and communication chief, the Tonale NFT’s ledger collects data from the SUV’s electronic console and encrypts all data on the blockchain.
Alfa Romeo looks to be the first auto manufacturer to employ NFTs in this manner, ostensibly in an effort to improve the efficiency and transparency of a car market that is frequently dependent on third parties to keep tabs of vehicle records.
The Tonale is available as a gas-powered vehicle or as a plug-in hybrid. Its “world premiere” comes as the Stellantis-owned company (Stellantis was formerly Fiat Chrysler) is starting to make a big futuristic push to an all-electric lineup by 2027.
Alfa Romeo has had a difficult time selling cars in recent years, disposing only fewer than 19,000 units per year in each of the last three years.
By comparison, BMW sold around 93,000 vehicles in the United States during the fourth quarter last year. Mercedes-Benz, on the other hand, sold a little more than 60,000 units in the fourth quarter of last year.
The Tonale will be available for pre-order in the fourth quarter of 2022, with the first batch expected to be delivered in the first quarter of the following year.
Meanwhile, other luxury car brands like Mercedes-Benz, Rolls-Royce, and Lamborghini have carried out their own trials with NFTs. Lamborghini, for example, recently unveiled its first NFT project dubbed “Space-Time Memory,” a collection of five images depicting a Lamborghini Ultimae Roadster traveling into space.
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Image from FastCompany, chart from TradingView.com