April 14, 2007, 9:36PM
Volkswagen believed to belong to Pope Benedict XVI before papacy doesn't sell on eBay
SAN FRANCISCO — A 1999 metallic gray Volkswagen Golf believed to once belong to the pope went up for sale on eBay, but the auction ended Saturday without a winner.
For the second time in two years, eBay hosted an auction for a car said to be Pope Benedict XVI's old hatchback. Though bids surpassed $204,000, a reserve price wasn't met.
The car's owner, a Texas-based online casino, GoldenPalace.com, bought the car in 2005 on eBay from a German man. The casino had posted two German automobile registration documents that list "Josef Kardinal Ratzinger" as the vehicle's previous owner.
A spokeswoman for eBay, Catherine Fisher, said she did not know what the seller's minimum price was. A message left with GoldenPalace.com was not immediately returned Saturday evening.
The online auction site said it had verified the car was owned by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger before he ascended to the papacy. The seller said it would give 40 percent of the proceeds of the sale to charity.