General Motors Versus Ford Photo Collage: MarketWatch

Brand War: GM sues Ford over name of its driver-assist package

*General Motors and subsidiary Cruise claim Ford’s BlueCruise is too similar to GM’s Super Cruise

Emmanuel Akosile | ConsumerConnect

It is all about competition in the marketplace. But what is in a name, especially when it comes to product branding? Plenty, if it happens to be similar to a moniker used by your chief rival.

So, in the case of General Motors (GM) and Ford, it has resulted in a lawsuit, report has said.

GM and its subsidiary Cruise are suing Ford because the latter calls its new driver-assist technology package BlueCruise.

The automaker maintains that is just a little too close to its Super Cruise system that provides much the same help to a driver.

The company has filed the suit was in US District Court for Northern California, agency report said.

Besides the names, the systems have other things in common, as both systems help keep vehicles in their proper lanes.

They also use facial recognition technology to make sure the driver’s eyes are fixed on the road ahead, report noted.

The suit, which claims Ford is infringing on GM’s trademark, notes that the original name for Ford’s technology was Active Drive Assist, which developed as an upgraded version of its CoPilot360 electronic driver aid package.

Ford changed the name in April amid growing concern that Tesla drivers were using their cars’ AutoPilot feature in ways it was never intended, according to report.

‘Will cause confusion’

The GM’s lawsuit contends that “Ford’s decision to rebrand by using a core mark used by GM and Cruise will inevitably cause confusion between the parties, the affiliation, connection, or association between them, and/or origin, sponsorship, or approval of their goods and services.”

Ford Spokesman in a statement, however, stated that the GM suit was without merit, saying, that it has designed the BlueCruise package for use in its Mustang Mach-E and F-150 pickup line.

The Spokesman stated: “Drivers for decades have understood what cruise control is, every automaker offers it, and ‘cruise’ is common shorthand for the capability.”

As regards what could turn out a fierce competition between the two leading automobile brands, GM has said that it is concerned Ford’s use of “BlueCruise” will inevitably cause confusion.

It is also true that both US carmakers are locked in fierce competition to develop self-driving technology, report said.

For instance, Ford in February 2021, was said to have announced a $29 billion initiative to support both electric and self-driving technology, with $7 billion to be invested in autonomous vehicles by 2025.

Whereas GM recently announced that it plans to install its Super Cruise package to six models in the 2022 model year, including the 2022 GMC Hummer EV pickup truck. Since GM introduced its driver-assist technology in 2017 it has mostly been limited to its Cadillac brand.

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