NOBODY wants Rita Barbera’s official cars. The woman who was Valencia City mayor for 24 years and is still a senator was recently expelled from the Partido Popular and will stand trial next month on money laundering charges.
The two cars were offered at rock bottom prices but there were no takers. An armoured Audi A8 with 84,000 kilometres on the clock which cost €270,000 had a starting price of €15,000 but received no bids. The car was bullet-proofed at a time when it was believed that the mayor was a potential target for the Basque terrorist group, ETA.
The second car, another Audi A8 without the bullet-proofing, had a reserve price of €18,000 but again failed to attract bids, although it had done only 63,000 kilometres and cost €37,000 eight years ago.
Valencia City Hall was surprised that no-one bid for the cars, municipal sources said, and must now decide whether to hold another auction with lower reserve prices or scrap the vehicles.
Next up for auction are five of the Harley Davidsons that Barbera acquired in 2006 so that the Local Police could escort Pope Benedict XVI in style when he visited the city.