The new trademark car Qoros GQ3 has a conflict with KIA QUORIS and AUDI Q3

It is not always easy to put your mark on the market without problems. The Chinese car company Qoros Automotive can endorse this phrase since they brought their new car called QOROS to the European market. First Qoros has a problem with Kia Motors Corporation because Kia introduced their new car model under the name QUORIS. This trademark is very similar to the trademark QOROS. Secondly AUDI filed legal actions the mark GQ3 of the Chinese company Qoros. Audi is namely the  proprietor of the mark Q3. How to deal with trademark attacks and defences?

The Chinese car company QOROS is located in Changshu city in China. Qoros will show the new models: GQ3, Estate and Cross Hybrid at the fair in Geneva (7 - 17 March) this year. The company has the intention to launch their sedan model GQ3 the first second half of 2013 on the Chinese market and afterwards on the European market. Qoros has the ambition to put a new model on the market every six months.

It seems that the car company Kia Motor Corporation has also a preference for a "Qoros"-like name because they named their international K9 version QUORIS. Kia filed the trademark in several European trademark registers in the period July-November 2012. Qoros Automotive started an opposition procedure against the brand QUORIS based on their earlier trademark registration QOROS. Meanwhile, Kia continues to advertise their new sedan version under the trademark QUORIS. Qoros filed legal actions before Court in order to prohibit the use of the mark QUORIS. The chance of success that the car company Qoros will win this case is high. Since it concerns a trademark case Qoros can ask a condemnation of all costs.

The other conflict Qoros encountered is with Audi who is the owner of the trademark Q3. Qoros applied for a trademark registration of the mark GQ3 for their new sedan in the European Union in February 2012. The trademark GQ3 mature into registration without any problems in July 2012. Audi will only get notice of the mark after the registration. They went to court to enforce the use of the combination Q3 for the sedan model by Qoros. Audi win the case but if Audi put their mark Q3 in a watching service or should paid attention to their watching notices they could file an opposition against the CTM mark GQ3 of Qoros. Audi has now only the possibility to file a cancellation action against the mark GQ3 in European trade mark register. Until now they have not took such an action. Qoros did not take any risk as they named their sedan model the "3 Sedan". The name is less inspiring. Hopefully, the appearance of the car will impress more.

What kind of tips will we provide this new ambitious car company when it comes to launching new trademarks. When creating new words or combined letter/number combinations, etc, it is advisable conducting preliminary trademark searches. The outcome of the searches will reveal if potential problems are to be expected. In addition to the name creation it is also advisable to have backup trademarks. When a trademark (for whatever reason) cannot be used there are other marks on the shelve that are ready to be picked. In this way the loss of time will be reduced when a company has to switch to another trademark name. And last but not least if a trademark is applied for registration, do not forget to put the trademark in a watching services. In this way, similar or identical marks will be signalized so that appropriate action can be taken without delay.


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MENTOS has been selling chewing gum under the name MENTOS PURE FRESH for several years. In order to protect her rights MENTOS has registered the following trademarks: the logo MENTOS PURE FRESH, the logo MENTOS PURE FRESH 3 and a figurative depiction of the word PURE. Defendant sells chewing gum under the trademark DENTYNE PURE and has registered its logo as a trademark. Infringement or not?
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