Abdirahaman Yussuf, 20, of Hob Moor Road in Yardley, will serve a minimum of 22 years before he can apply for parole.
His victim, Yahya Sharif, was ambushed moments after getting out of his car on one of the city’s busiest streets at rush hour: Coventry Road, Small Heath.
The 18-year-old was stabbed once in the chest and managed to escape, but quickly collapsed and died at the scene.
CCTV captured Yussuf with a group conversing nearby moments before he walked towards the victim’s BMW when it stopped at around 5:20 pm on December 10, 2021.
A murder investigation was launched and officers recovered the knife and discarded clothing from a nearby street.
Following a public plea for help in finding Yussuf, he was arrested in London on February 16 last year.
Concealed in an envelope in his sock were handwritten rap lyrics that apparently referenced the stabbing.
Following a trial at Birmingham Crown Court that began in October, Yussuf was found guilty of murder on December 9.
Before passing sentence today, the court heard personal statements from Yahya’s parents.
His father said, “I feel pain when I see children the same age as my son go out, drive a car, go to school, work, talk about college, and walk with their parents. Yahya was a bright boy with a great future ahead of him.
“All his teachers loved him. From a very young age he was motivated and doing good within our community”.
His mother said, “There are many times when I have not been able to sit in court because of the memories of the day my son died. I still don’t know why they killed my son. Saying sorry won’t bring my son back. I can’t go on, my life is destroyed.
“My son should still be alive and I miss him every day. Yahya meant everything to me and I dreamed of seeing him get married and meet my future grandchildren. All of this has been taken from me and his brothers and sisters.”