As part of its involvement in Europe’s biggest AIDS charity event, MINI was able to enlist three absolute style icons for the design of its hotly coveted Life Ball MINIs: Diane von Furstenberg, Kenneth Cole and Calvin Klein Collection’s award-winning Women’s Creative Director Francisco Costa, are all doing their bit for this good cause. MINI provided each creative designer with their favourite model, on which they are bestowing their own individual stamp. These collector’s items will be auctioned at the amfAR Gala in Vienna on 17 July on behalf of the charitable cause, with proceeds going to amfAR, the Foundation for AIDS Research.

The design of the 2010 Life Ball MINIs.

Belgian-born US fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg demonstrated her creativity on the MINI. The result is a car that creates a big splash of color on the road. The red MINI is sprinkled with colourful lips that also kiss the rear windows. The roof and alloys create a contrast in pure white, and the bonnet is adorned with the designer’s initials. “Life is love, love is life! I wanted to create something that celebrates life and reminds us of the importance of health. The red colour of the MINI expresses the awareness of HIV/AIDS, the lips represent Diane von Furstenberg. This car is bursting with life and love,” remarked the fashion icon.

New York fashion designer Kenneth Cole set to work on a MINI Convertible. He created a gleaming silver jewel made of fine, brushed metal. The striking surface of the body is covered in studs, which are also reflected in the interior. Says the designer of his Life Ball MINI: “In our collection we always aim to bring fashion and function into harmony. And that is precisely what the MINI Convertible stands for. It is at once an elegant and functional car. We designed the body in brushed metal, in line with our autumn/winter accessories line, and lent it our hallmark signature. We hope the MINI will give pleasure to followers of fashion and auto fans alike and command a high price in the amfAR auction.”

Calvin Klein Collection’s award-winning Women’s Creative Director Francisco Costa lent his artistic touch to a MINI Countryman – the brand-new crossover model from MINI. This car is a fashion understatement in matt black. In self-assured minimalist style, each of the front doors bears the hallmark signature of the Calvin Klein Collection in black reflective rubber.

MINI at the 2010 Life Ball.

This year MINI marks its tenth successive involvement in Europe’s leading AIDS charity event. The 18th Life Ball will be held in Vienna on 17 July 2010, a hot spot that will once again draw celebrities from around the world. This flamboyant and extrovert event flies the flag for tolerance and solidarity and provides MINI with the perfect platform on which to highlight its social-political commitment. Worldwide measures to combat HIV/AIDS are one of the main elements of the corporate and social policy pursued by the BMW Group.

This year’s Life Ball takes place against a special backdrop, being held to tie in with the 18th International Aids Conference that opens in Vienna the day after the big event. On 17 July, not only will Vienna’s City Hall and City Hall Square be dedicated to the red ribbon cause, but the Burgtheater will embrace it as well with its Red Ribbon Cotillion Summer Ball, and even the Austrian Parliament, which hosts the amfAR Gala. In keeping with this year’s motto “Sow the Seeds of Solidarity!” and the “Earth” theme, the 2010 Life Ball will be planting its seeds wherever there is a genuine need around the world.