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Foundation Hopes Donated Car Will Benefit Needed Charities

December 13, 2013, Washington, D.C.

This past May Sergio Marchionne, chairman and CEO of Chrysler Group LLC, donated a 2013 SRT Viper GTS to the Sons of Italy Foundation (SIF), a nationally recognized nonprofit based in Washington D.C. The SIF is the philanthropic arm of the 109-year-old Order Sons of Italy in America (OSDIA), the largest (500,000 family members) Italian American organization in the world, and a patriotic group which has been highly praised by every U.S. president since Woodrow Wilson.

The car is rare, a one-off model specially designed by SRT CEO Ralph Gilles for the SIF. Its pearl white exterior will be the only one produced in that color this year, and it features specially made wheels, hood and leather interior accented in the Italian colors of red, white and green.

The color of this “bellissima beast,” says Dutch Mandel of Autoweek, and “its reason for being are truly noteworthy.” This Viper has been hailed in the industry as a tasteful tribute to Italian flare for beauty and fashion.

It is also the most powerful Italian American automobile ever made in the United States, with 640 HP. Never to be replicated. One of a kind. Marchionnes personal salute to his heritage and the vast Italian American community of an estimated 26 million.

Marchionne and Chrysler donated the car to the SIF because of its incredible record of philanthropy. Since 1959, the non-profit has given more than $127 million to medical research, international and domestic relief efforts and veterans causes. The plan is to auction the car off with all proceeds being applied to its charitable benefactors.

The car will be auctioned by Russo and Steele Auctioneers on Friday, January 17, 2014, in Scottsdale, Ariz. The car will be the highlight of a weeklong classic and luxury car extravaganza, and is scheduled to ‘go on the block’ between 7:30-9:30 p.m. that night. It will be offered “NO RESERVE.” Potential buyers need not be present at the auction to bid; please contact Russo and Steele about bidding options,

SIF leaders are excited about the prospects of raising money for their most worthy charities. “The SIF has given tens of millions of dollars to combat fatal and debilitating diseases that affect people of all ages, such as Cooley’s anemia, Alzheimer’s, autism and cancer,” said SIF CEO Dr. Philip Piccigallo. “We have also taken on numerous causes supportive of our brave troops, veterans and their families,” he added, “especially those affecting severely wounded warriors.”

The SIF works closely with actors Joe Mantegna and Gary Sinise to help bring vitally needed sustenance to the brave men and women who have given so much to their country.

“I have proudly served as the SIF’s emcee at their springtime fundraiser in D.C. for more than a dozen years,” said Mantegna, who will be doing a promotional video to highlight the SIF and help sell the Viper. Mantegna’s and Sinise’s patriotic charities both will benefit directly from the Viper’s sale, as will the highly regarded Wounded Warrior Project.

The Viper carries a $139,000 book value. But a 2013 SRT sold for $300,000 this past January at another Scottsdale auction.

“We are extremely optimistic,” said Piccigallo. “We are hoping to generate much more than that amount, so that we may adequately and generously fund our important charities.” Any purchased price above the book value is fully tax deductible. A $1 million bid would represent the single largest donation to SIF/OSDIA in its rich 109-year history.

“What an opportunity to help young kids recover their hearing, or live years longer, or to rebuild the crushed lives of brave soldiers and their families, or to help care for those who cannot even remember their loved ones, while at the same time owning a one of a kind Super Car, and reaping a massive tax benefit,” emphasizes Piccigallo. “Sounds like a winner to me.”

Preview the Sons of Italy Foundations 2013 SRT Viper GTS

See SRT Head of Design Mark Trostle comment on the SIF’s Viper at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance

The SIF is the philanthropic arm of the Order Sons of Italy in America (OSDIA), the largest and oldest organization for Italian Americans in the United States. Since its founding in 1959, the SIF has contributed more than $127 million to medical research, disaster relief, scholarships and cultural preservation, along with other special projects. The SRT Viper auction proceeds will help fund these philanthropic programs.

Established in 1905, the Order Sons of Italy in America (OSIA) has hundreds of thousands of family members located in all fifty states and the District of Columbia. OSIA works at the community, national and international levels to promote the heritage and culture of an estimated 26 million Italian Americans, the nation's fifth largest ethnic group, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. To learn more, visit


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