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    Skoda barred from using the Monte Carlo moniker in India

    by V3Cars Team on Saturday, Oct 21 2017

    A whole lot of things go on in the vast and fast changing car market of India. Amid innumerable news about great new cars, fascinating technology and a lot of sustainable green technology all set to come to India, there are few headlines that come as surprise. One such news is that Skoda Auto India has been barred from using the Monte Carlo moniker in the country.

    A whole lot of things go on in the vast and fast changing car market of India. Amid innumerable news about great new cars, fascinating technology and a lot of sustainable green technology all set to come to India, there are few headlines that come as surprise. One such news is that Skoda Auto India has been barred from using the Monte Carlo moniker in the country.

     

    The new Skoda Rapid Monte Carlo Edition was launched by the Czech automaker in the car market of India in the month of August, this year. Now, Monte Carlo edition series of cars from the house of Skoda are offered internationally, and is meant to pay homage to the racing heritage. Monte Carlo is actually a place in the country of Monaco in the French Riviera. It is also good to mention that as trademark issues matter a great deal, the current monarchy receives official payment from Skoda for the rights to use the Monte Carlo name for the exclusively branded special edition car models.

    Now, after saying so much, people would be left to wonder why Skoda is actually stopped from using the ‘Monte Carlo’ name in India, if the company has the official rights to use it globally. The reason lies in an Indian apparel brand with the same name. A lot of people can easily remember or use the Monte Carlo clothing, or especially the winter garments. And this Indian clothing brand from Punjab has taken this matter to court.  

     

    Quirky as it may sound, Skoda Auto India has been banned to use the Monte Carlo moniker for the Rapid or any car by a temporary injunction by a district court which passed the judgment in favour of the Indian apparel brand a few days ago. By the court, Skoda has been cited with trademark infringement. This is because the Indian clothing brand received the trademark for the 'Monte Carlo' name at an earlier date in India.

     

    During the hearing that was headed by district judge Mukesh Kumar, the court has ruled that “the plaintiff would suffer irreparable loss if injunction is not granted". While we don’t question the court's decision, one would wonder if trademarks revolving around names of places should be considered at all, as Monte Carlo is a name of place and doesn’t belong to the branding of any particular company, Indian or international. However, this is not the first incident in India. American auto major, Ford launched its Endeavour premium SUV back in 2003, which is originally branded as the Ford Everest internationally and is still known as the Everest. The Everest name also explains the mountain range motif etched on its spare wheel cover on the previous model. However, as in India, a first owned the trademark to the 'Everest' nameplate; Ford was forced to rename the SUV as the 'Endeavour' to avoid trademark violation.

    It is also just our viewpoint that the clothing brand Monte Carlo in India can’t be incurring loss if a premium auto brand such as Skoda uses the same name. On the contrary, Monte Carlo clothes could be actually benefitting from such a premium association.


    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    V3Cars Team is the India’s most reliable source of all new launched & upcoming car news, updates & reviews.

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