FCA also alleges that the Mahindra Roxor would harm the goodwill and business it enjoys in the United States due to the fact that Mahindra imports the Roxor into the USA as completely knocked down units, which are built in India, allowing the Indian carmaker to undercut the price of Jeeps built in the US.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) has just filed a USA trade complaint in an effort to bar Indian automaker Mahindra from importing an off-road vehicle that looks eerily similar to its iconic Jeep model.
"They are a almost identical copy of the iconic Jeep design", the company said in its complaint, which included photos comparing the Roxor to the Jeep.
Bloomberg reports that FCA's complaint to the US International Trade Commission alleges that the Roxor infringes upon Jeep's "boxy body shape with flat-appearing vertical sides and rear body ending at about the same height as the hood", and that the Indian brand's selling of the Roxor in the US infringes on key characteristics of its cars. Mahindra has not yet been served with the complaint and we prefer not to comment at length on the dispute at this time. According to The Detroit News, Mahindra responded to the complaint Friday, calling it without merit given past agreements between the company and FCA.
Mahindra plans to invest about US$600 million (RM2.4 billion) in November for its Roxor manufacturing facility. It also states that that Roxor is "modelled after the original Willys Jeep".
The Indian auto giant cited a 2009 deal with Jeep's previous custodian Chrysler Group LLC - the SUV brand's parent company before Daimler Chrysler and now Fiat Chrysler - as its most recent arrangement to build Willys copies.
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To this, the home-grown automaker pointed out that Mahindra has a long-standing relationship and agreements with FCA and its predecessors, which began in the 1940's with Willys and continues to this day.
FCA filed the complaint against Mahindra on August 1, 2018.
"Our action, products, and product distribution (including Roxor) both honor the legacy of the relationship and the terms of our agreements with FCA".
Many were surprised when Mahindra launched the Roxor in the American market.
Mahindra also claims that it has peacefully co-existed with the FCA group in multiple markets across the world including its home market of India. The company recently opened a manufacturing center in MI where the Roxor is assembled as an off-highway side-by-side.