Volkswagen fails to protect its GTI brand against Suzuki

Article by Christian Andrei, on March 23, 2012

The EU's General Court ruled that a trademark for Swift GTi granted to Suzuki Motor Corp. can’t be overturned by Volkswagen Group. The European Union's Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market had granted that trademark. In a statement, the Luxembourg-based court said that this trademark and the earlier trademarks 'GTI' held by Volkswagen aren’t likely to be confused with each other.

Eric Felber, a spokesman for Volkswagen in Wolfsburg, said that Volkswagen will review the ruling and will think about whether it will file an appeal to the EU Court of Justice, the highest court in the region.

In an e-mail, Felber said that the automaker’s German rights to the GTI trademark won’t be affected by the ruling. In a separate issue, arbitration is ongoing between VW and Suzuki over a dispute related to 2009 cooperation agreement. Suzuki wants to compel VW to sell back its 19.9% stake in Suzuki.

Topics: vw, gti, suzuki

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