Auto Service World
News   August 24, 2005   by Auto Service World

GM Mulls Counterfeit Car Charges

General Motors has played down talks that it is apparently considering legal action against a Chinese partner of Ford after the company began exporting what GM believes is a copy of on of its vehicles.
The counterfeit car charges were originally alleged in a Financial Times article and are apparently being considered after Jiangling Motors began exports to Europe of a vehicle GM believes is a copy of one of its vehicles.
GM claims Jiangling’s LandWind has the body of the Frontera.
The company has handed the case to its legal department to consider whether to start a lawsuit, although no decisions have been made.
"In response to an inquiry from Financial Times last week, GM Europe commented that GM has always taken great care to protect its intellectual property rights across the world," GM said in a statement.
"At this stage, we do not feel it’s appropriate to comment further or speculate on where any specific evaluation will lead," it added.
What could complicate any litigation is that GM itself has a business connection to the Chinese company.
GM’s own joint venture partner in China, Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp., holds a stake in Jiangling, which in turn does not itself assemble the LandWind. This is done by a sister company owned by a Chinese local government body. Jiangling is a joint venture partner with Isuzu, GM’s associate partner in Japan, which originally designed the Frontera.

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