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Location: London, England, United Kingdom

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

For sale - pristine vintage motor, one Fascist owner

Here's a motor Paolo di Canio may well be interested in.

BENITO MUSSOLINI’S 1939 Lancia Astura will be auctioned on the internet for charity, the latest sign of the fascination that Italy’s Fascist dictator continues to command, 60 years after his death.

Proceeds from the auction on eBay will go to the SickKids Foundation, a Canadian charity. The starting price has been set at €500,000 (£341,000).

Buyers have ten days to bid for what eBay has described as “a significant historical automobile, in fine condition”. The car, which was custom-made for Il Duce, is being auctioned by its anonymous American owner. It is not clear how he came to own it.

The Lancia was last seen in public in 1962, at an exhibition of historic cars at Niagara Falls attended by Romano Mussolini, the dictator’s son, a jazz musician.

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