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GM and Cruise are suing Ford for blocking use of the BlueCruise identify for hands-free driving

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The new GM logo will appear on the facade of General Motors' headquarters in Detroit, Michigan, USA on March 16, 2021. REUTERS / Rebecca Cook

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By Joseph White

DETROIT (Reuters) – General Motors Co and its Cruise robo-taxi subsidiary have filed a lawsuit to prevent Ford Motor (NYSE 🙂 Co from using the BlueCruise name to market its hands-free drive technology, the company said Company on Saturday.

In a statement released shortly after midnight Detroit Time, GM said that Ford's use of the BlueCruise name infringes GM's Super Cruise brand as well as the Cruise brand.

"While GM had hoped to amicably resolve the trademark infringement matter with Ford, we had no choice but to vigorously defend our brands and protect the capital our products and technologies have earned in the market over several years," said GM in his statement.

In the lawsuit filed on Friday, GM said automakers had "lengthy discussions" over the matter but failed to resolve the dispute.

GM alleges trademark infringement and unfair competition in the lawsuit. The US automaker # 1 has sought an order from the court banning Ford from using the BlueCruise name and unspecified damage.

Ford called the lawsuit, which was filed in federal court in California, "baseless and frivolous".

"Drivers have understood what cruise control is for decades, every automaker offers it, and 'cruise' is a common acronym for capability," Ford said in a statement. "That is why BlueCruise was chosen as the name for the next evolutionary stage of the Intelligent Adaptive Cruise Control from Ford in the Blue Oval."

Automakers are fighting against each other to use technology that allows drivers to take their hands off the steering wheel in traffic jams or on highways. The so-called Advanced Driver Assistance Systems, such as the semi-automatic autopilot technology from Tesla (NASDAQ 🙂 Inc., should not allow the driver to completely separate from driving for a long time.

Automakers have used the word cruise for decades to describe cruise control systems that allow the driver to set a speed that the car would normally maintain when driving on the freeway.

"Ford knew what it was doing," said GM in the lawsuit. "Ford's decision to use a trademark used by GM and Cruise will inevitably create confusion."

GM announced in 2012 that it would use the Super Cruise name for its hands-free driver assistance technology and has been marketing the technology under that name since 2017.

The self-driving vehicle unit Cruise, which is majority-owned by GM, has been in operation since 2013.

Ford announced it would use the BlueCruise name https://www.reuters.com/business/autos-transportation/ford-offer-hands-free-driving-some-car-truck-models-later-this-year-2021 – 04-14 for his hands-free technology this April.

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