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Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Ford F-150: now the whole vehicle is being copied

According to, which might not be the most reliable source of news in the world (but the story is elsewhere too), Ford's IP problems with the F-150 have not finished yet. First they had a spat with Ferrari over the designation of last season's formula 1 car (likelihood of confusion? but of course!) then there was GM's Superbowl TV commercial. And now a Chinese manufacturer, SAC, is alleged to have ripped off the design of the vehicle as a whole. It seems they have some form for doing so, and as Dave Musker told last year's Motor Law conference there are many Chinese vehicle designs that look suspiciously like other manufacturers' products.

It doesn't look to me too much like a slavish copy, though. The blue badge in the middle of the grille isn't very clever, admittedly, but the lines of the truck itself look distinctly different - and how much freedom does the designer of a pick-up actually have? It's a pretty generic-looking truck, to my eye. But Ford, I know, have their own ideas of what amounts to counterfeiting ... So far, although news of the vehicle has been out for a while, I've seen no report of Ford taking any action about it.

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