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Jaguar Land Rover / Ineos spat highlights tricky shape of design trade marks

This article was first published in Automotive World, and the full article can be found online here.

The complexity of trade marking vehicle shapes has been highlighted by JLR’s attempted defence of an iconic Land Rover design.

It has been widely reported that Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is attempting to block chemicals company, Ineos, from developing a new 4×4 inspired by the Land Rover Defender. Ineos’s intended vehicle has allegedly been dubbed the “spiritual successor” to the Defender which JLR ceased producing in 2016.

Intellectual Property Office (IPO) records show JLR has applied to register a succession of 3D trade marks for the shape of the Defender, both at UK and EU level, no doubt to deter competitors from launching similar designs. But will JLR succeed?

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