Jaguar Land Rover sued Chinese automaker Jiangling, claiming that its Landwind X7 sport utility vehicle copied British carmaker's Range Rover Evoque, reported Reuters.
Unveiled in November 2014, Jiangling Motor's Landwind X7 SUV seemed to have taken inspiration from the Range Rover Evoque and it looks almost identical to JLR's model. Although JLR's Range Rover Evoque was on sale in China before the arrival of Landwind X7, the company started selling the locally-produced model only in 2015. According to the report, a court in Beijing's Chaoyang district has served Jiangling "newly filed actions surrounding copyright and unfair competition."
In China, the X7's is only one-third of the price of the Jaguar Land Rover's Range Rover Evoque. The X7's front and rear styling looks similar to the Range Rover Evoque, including the taillight and the headlights.
Although, there have been allegations of copying the designs of cars in China before too, it said that the automakers rarely take this to the court as it involves risk of damaging their reputation and also due to the difficulties of winning a case against the Chinese carmakers in their home turf. Hence, JLR's lawsuit is being closely watched by the industry and if the company manages to win, this would push other global carmakers to take up the case.
Reuters also noted that Japanese automaker Honda had won a legal battle in China after 12 years against a local carmaker for making a vehicle that looked similar to Honda's bestselling CR-V SUV.