by Staff Writers
Milan (AFP) May 31, 2012
Italian luxury sports carmaker Ferrari said Thursday it was organising a rare online auction to raise funds for victims of two earthquakes that left 23 people dead and thousands homeless in Italy.
"Ferrari has decided to collect funds to help the families of victims of the quakes which hit the Emilia Romagna region with a big online auction open to bidders internationally," the famous automaker said in a statement.
Among the "important and rare" items up for auction will be a Ferrari 599XX Evo, the latest of the luxury racing line's track-only specials, usually only driven by select customers as part of the brand's development process.
As well as the snazzy car -- which has a commercial value of 1.3 million euros ($1.6 million) -- racing suits and helmets donated by current Formula One drivers Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa will also go under the hammer.
Items for sale will be offered on the Ferrari store website from next week.
"As soon as news about the earthquake came out, Ferrari clients and collectors from around the world spontaneously contacted the Maranello headquarters to offer their contribution," the company said.
Ferrari, which belongs to the Fiat group, is based in Maranello near Modena. The region was hit by a fatal quake on Tuesday, sparking panic and misery in an area severely damaged by another deadly tremor on May 20.
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