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Carmaker donates US$1 million to United Way Worldwide's COVID-19 relief

Friday, May 15, 2020

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Following a seven-day bidding period which attracted 32 bids, an online auction hosted by RM Sotheby's for the last Porsche 911 Speedster to enter and pass down the serial production line has raised US$500,000.

Porsche Cars North America, Inc (PCNA) has decided to match the winning bid to raise the total proceeds to US$1 million. The money will be donated to United Way Worldwide, less taxes and fees, to directly aid its COVID-19 response.


“When we began this project, I wanted to use our voice to help raise awareness and funding for the incredible work of United Way.

I am pleased to have helped draw attention to their efforts and I am deeply appreciative of the generosity and kindness of all the participants and the winning bidder. We are joining in that spirit by making our own donation on top of the winning bid for this special part of our history. We can now look forward to the funds raised making a direct difference to those who need it most right now,” said PCNA President and CEO Klaus Zellmer.


The US-based auction was open to American residents only. Bidding began on April 15 and closed on April 22 at 1:00 pm EDT. The winning bidder will receive the 911 Speedster at a special event hosted by Zellmer.


With the car comes a unique package of experiences and gift items, including an exclusive tour at the time of the winner's choosing of Porsche's engineering and design headquarters in Weissach, Germany, as the guest of Dr Frank-Steffen Walliser and Andreas Preuninger, both of Porsche-Motorsport.


The prize also includes a bespoke Porsche Design timepiece complete with the chassis number of the 911 Speedster etched onto its casing, accompanied by a specially created single-edition book charting the construction of the last 991 Speedster as it entered and passed down the serial production line in Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen, Germany.


The Speedster, Porsche language for an open top two-seater sports car, was revived in 2018 to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the brand. Based on the 991 generation of Porsche 911 only 1,948 units will be ever created, signifying the June 8, 1948 date that the company received its operating licence.


United Way Worldwide President and CEO Brian Gallagher expressed appreciation to the automaker.


“Porsche's generosity will make a real difference as we fight COVID-19 and prepare for the recovery phase in the communities that we serve. United Way is focused on supporting those who need it most right now, and the money raised by this unique sale will go to local health care services, food banks, and to providing care and triage for impacted communities. We appreciate the speed and enthusiasm by which Porsche has made all of this possible,” said Gallagher.


Kenneth Ahn, president, RM Sotheby, said the collaborative spirit and urgency with which this sale was arranged really brought out the best in each of the organisations involved — all with the aim of quickly and efficiently raising awareness and funding for the important work of United Way.


“We have been proud to have been part of the sale, and thank PCNA for entrusting us with the process for an important cause.

The bidding proved to be every bit as exciting and intense as we had hoped. It's always fantastic to witness the generosity of the collector car community and we'd like to extend our sincere gratitude to all bidders, and our congratulations to the eventual winner,” Ahnsaid.


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