September 5, 2008

Iconic Mercedes-Benz S550 Sedan to Raise $1 Million for Saks Fifth Avenue’s KEY TO THE CURE

MONTVALE, N.J., Sept. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- For decades the Mercedes-Benz S-Class has epitomized the best in automotive design, performance, luxury and safety. Now this icon will use its star power to raise funds for women's cancer research, new treatments, education and prevention. Mercedes-Benz USA (MBUSA) has designed a special edition S550 sedan to help raise funds for Saks Fifth Avenue's KEY TO THE CURE, a women's cancer initiative developed in partnership with the Entertainment Industry Foundation's (EIF) Women's Cancer Research Fund. As a national sponsor of Saks Fifth Avenue's KEY TO THE CURE, MBUSA expects to contribute $1 million through the sale of 1,000 exclusive S-Class vehicles scheduled to arrive at Mercedes-Benz dealerships this month, bringing the total raised to date by MBUSA for women's cancer research to over $6 million.

   (Photo: )   (Logo:  

As elegant as it is powerful, the special Edition S550 sedan features exclusive Diamond White metallic exterior paint, Sahara Beige/Black interior, and 20" AMG 5-spoke light-alloy wheels with high-performance tires. A car for those who appreciate superior handling and power, the S550's 5.5-liter, 382-horsepower V-8 engine will rocket this sedan from 0-60 mph in only 5.4 seconds.

"The S550 offers auto enthusiasts not only what they've come to expect from Mercedes-Benz -- progressive automotive design, award-winning technical innovations and unparalleled performance -- but now, as part of KEY TO THE CURE, a unique opportunity to help make a difference in the fight against cancer," said Steve Cannon, vice president of marketing for Mercedes-Benz USA. "This is a cause that touches so many lives and we are proud to partner with Saks Fifth Avenue and the Entertainment Industry Foundation in this important campaign."

   The Special Edition S550 is equipped with:   -- Diamond White Metallic Paint   -- Exclusive Sahara Beige / Black Leather Interior with Burl Walnut Trim   -- 20" AMG 5-spoke light-alloy wheels with high-performance tires   -- Sport bodystyling (front air dam, side skirts and rear bumper with dual      stainless-steel exhaust)   -- Available 4MATIC all-wheel drive    

Known world-wide for achieving the best in luxury, safety and comfort, the Signature Edition S550 also features AIRMATIC air suspension with Adaptive Damping System, heated and active-ventilated drive-dynamic multicontour front seats with 4-level massage feature, a power sunroof, PARKTRONIC audiovisual parking assist, KEYLESS GO, electronic trunk closer, and a rear view camera. Each Special Edition S550 sedan is also equipped with GPS navigation and a 14-speaker harman/kardon LOGIC7 surround sound system with Dolby Digital 5.1, SIRIUS satellite radio, an in-dash 6-disc DVD/CD changer, an in-dash memory card reader, voice control for audio, telephone and navigation, and an iPod integration kit.

To celebrate the 10th Anniversary of KEY TO THE CURE and give a voice to those the campaign supports, Saks Fifth Avenue, EIF and Mercedes-Benz USA is co-sponsoring a road trip, during which blogger Lori Raimondo is traveling in the special edition Mercedes-Benz to Saks Fifth Avenue stores across the country. Lori began the journey in San Francisco and is making stops in Beverly Hills, Phoenix, Dallas, Atlanta, Indianapolis, Chicago, Chevy Chase, and New York. The Saks Fifth Avenue store in each city is hosting Lori and introducing her to cancer survivors, community partners, local businesses, and media. Lori is blogging about her trip on, where readers can share their personal stories.

Adding additional star power to the campaign, Academy Award(R) winning actress Gwyneth Paltrow has been named Entertainment Industry Foundation ambassador for Saks Fifth Avenue's 2008 KEY TO THE CURE and will show her support by wearing this year's KEY TO THE CURE limited edition t-shirt designed by Karl Lagerfeld. Ms. Paltrow will appear in promotional materials and in a national public service announcement (PSA) to bring attention to this critical issue. The PSA will appear in major fashion and lifestyle magazines this fall.

Saks Fifth Avenue's charity shopping weekend will take place October 16th to 19th at all of its stores nationwide and through, during which 2% of sales will benefit local organizations through EIF's Women's Cancer Research Fund. The Special Edition S550 sedan will be displayed at Saks Fifth Avenue stores during this timeframe. Additionally, the limited edition t-shirt will retail for $40 (over $35 to charity), exclusively to benefit KEY TO THE CURE and will be available at Saks Fifth Avenue beginning October 1st.

Funds raised for Saks Fifth Avenue's KEY TO THE CURE will benefit more than 50 charitable programs nationwide dedicated to finding new detection methods, treatments and cures for women's cancers. Organizations benefiting from these funds include: EIF's Women's Cancer Research Fund; The Breast Cancer Research Foundation; the Cleveland Clinic; Boston's Dana-Farber Cancer Institute; the Nevada Cancer Institute; and many others.

Mercedes-Benz USA

Mercedes-Benz USA, headquartered in Montvale, New Jersey, is responsible for the sales, marketing and service of all Mercedes-Benz products in the United States. In 2007, MBUSA achieved an all-time sales record of 253,433 new vehicles, setting the highest sales volume ever in its history. More information on MBUSA and its products can be found on the Internet at

EIF's Women's Cancer Research Fund

The Women's Cancer Research Fund, a program of the Entertainment Industry Foundation, was established by Chairs Rita Wilson, Tom Hanks, Kate Capshaw and Steven Spielberg, along with Founders Kelly Chapman Meyer, Anne Douglas, Quinn Ezralow, Marion Laurie and Jamie Tisch. The Women's Cancer Research Fund supports innovative research, education, and outreach directed at the development of more effective approaches to the early diagnosis, treatment and prevention of all women's cancers.

Entertainment Industry Foundation

As a philanthropic leader of the entertainment industry, the Entertainment Industry Foundation has distributed hundreds of millions of dollars -- and provided countless volunteer hours -- to support charitable initiatives addressing some of the most critical issues facing society today. For more information, visit

Saks Fifth Avenue

Saks Fifth Avenue, one of the world's pre-eminent specialty retailers, is renowned for its superlative American and international designer collections, its expertly edited assortment of handbags, shoes, jewelry, cosmetics and home furnishings, and the first-rate fashion expertise and exemplary client service of its Associates. Today, Saks operates 54 full-line stores in 25 states,

2 stores in the Middle East in Dubai and Riyadh, 49 OFF 5th Outlet Stores and, the company's online store.

Photo: NewsCom: Archive: PhotoExpress Network: PRN2PRN Photo Desk, [email protected]

Mercedes-Benz USA

CONTACT: Donna Boland, +1-201-573-6893, or Tracy Darchini,+1-201-573-4734, or Toll-free 1-888-MBNEWS-1, all of Mercedes-Benz USA

Web site: