Click for more hi-res images from the Ferrari California launch event in Santa Monica, California

"We're not building a cheap Ferrari". That was the oft-repeated party line from Maranello as the Prancing Horse marque was plainly working on the new California. Well no kidding, not at these prices.

The first example of the Ferrari California was sold during its American unveiling in Santa Monica this week, garnering a top bid of $520,000. The event was attended by a handful of Hollywood celebrities, and even the Governator dropped by. Half a million can buy you a lot of car, and the California is expected to retail for about a third of that amount, but of course that's not the point: proceeds from the sale will go to the After-School All-Stars charitable foundation. Press release after the jump and images in the gallery below.

Related GalleryFerrari California US unveiling

[Source: Ferrari]



PRESS RELEASE

Emotion and passion at the Ferrari California world premiere at Maranello and Los Angeles


Charity auction at Los Angeles
in the presence of governor Schwarzenegger

The best from both events on www.ferraricalifornia.com

Maranello 19th September - The Ferrari California world premiere ended late last night with more than 1,000 guests from all over the world at Los Angeles and Maranello.

At the private airport of Santa Monica, where the US-American presentation was held, the new Ferrari California came under the hammer for 520,000 USD at a charity auction. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Governor of California, made a brief appearance at the event to commend Ferrari for their commitment in supporting After-School All-Stars, an association that engages middle-school kids in activities that increase confidence and encourage success in all areas of their lives, to which the auction's earnings will be donated.

Meanwhile the Ferrari California was presented at Maranello by Ferrari President Luca di Montezemolo, together with the Scuderia Ferrari drivers Kimi Raikkonen and Felipe Massa, who drove the car inside the new factory building, planned by Jean Nouvel, surrounded by images from the history of the Prancing Horse. Michael Schumacher, involved in the development of the new Granturismo from Maranello, underlined the sporty qualities and flexibility of the new California.

The event was broadcasted on www.ferraricalifornia.com, where as of now the most significant images of the events are recalled.