Tue, Mar 26, 2019 - Page 10 News List

Fake Range Rovers barred in rare Chinese court win

Bloomberg

A Chinese copycat of the Range Rover Evoque has been banished from driveways in China, a rare legal victory for foreign companies locked in intellectual property disputes with local companies.

A court in Beijing ordered Jiangling Motors Corp (江鈴汽車) to immediately stop making and selling the Landwind X7 after finding that it copied five unique features from the Evoque, manufacturer Jaguar Land Rover Automotive PLC said in a statement on Friday last week.

The Beijing Chaoyang District Court also ruled that Jaguar Land Rover be paid compensation, the company said, without giving an amount.

A representative for Jiangling had no immediate comment.

China’s treatment of foreign intellectual property has been a key component of trade talks with the US.

The US government is sending negotiators to China for another round of discussions this week.

US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and US Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin are scheduled to travel to Beijing for talks starting on Thursday, the White House said on Saturday last week.

At the China Development Forum in Beijing on Sunday, Vice Premier Han Zheng (韓正) reaffirmed policies to better protect intellectual property rights, forbid forced technology transfers and reduce restricted areas for foreign investment toward the level of access in free-trade zones.

Jaguar Land Rover, owned by Indian conglomerate Tata Group, had accused Jiangling of a “copy-and-paste” job after the Landwind was unveiled in 2014.

The court decision was the “first such case to support a foreign company in the car industry” and would strengthen its confidence in investing in China, Jaguar Land Rover said.

Overseas automakers, including Honda Motor Co and Porsche Automobil Holding SE, have long complained that their designs have been knocked off by Chinese rivals. Honda lost a 2004 lawsuit in China after accusing Shuanghuan Automobile Co Ltd (雙環汽車) of copying the CR-V model.

The same year, Honda won a court ruling stopping a Chinese company from selling Hongda-brand motorbikes.

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