Mini has sponsored the Life Ball benefit to support HIV/AIDS research in Europe for 11 years now, each year contributing a special one-off car to be auctioned for the charity. This year, the British marque commissioned a special-edition version of its new Roadster from Franca Sozzani, the chief editor of Italian Vogue.
Sozzani said in a prepared release that her inspiration for this year’s car came from “[the thought of] a beautiful woman who put a scarf on her head when she drives a Mini Roadster.” The one-off Roadster will wear matte Deepest Purple paint and a floral design on the roof, which is supposed to evoke the pattern of a woman’s scarf. Traditional Mini racing stripes and accents on the mirror housings and alloy wheels are all done in a steel color to contrast against the dark aubergine shade of the body.
This year’s one-off Mini Roadster will be auctioned off as part of the AIDS Solidarity Gala on April 19 at the Hofburg palace in Vienna, Austria. Mini and Vogue Italy will also be teaming up to present a fashion show during the Life Ball 2012. Past special-edition Minis have raised upwards of €500,000; last year’s car was a 2011 Mini Cooper S designed by the Caten brothers of DSquared2. Other Mini Life Ball creations include a 2010 Cooper Countryman designed by Francisco Costa of Calvin Klein, a 2010 Cooper S modified by Diane Von Furstenberg, a 2010 Cooper Convertible decked out by Kenneth Cole, and designs by Agent Provocateur, The Blonds for Katy Perry, Diesel, Missioni, and Donatella Versace.