Peugeot: Peugeot bans selling three-wheeled scooters in France and Italy due to patent issues

Peugeot Motorcycles, owned by Mahindra & Mahindra, has been prohibited from selling the Peugeot Metropolis three-wheeled scooter in France and Italy.

Courts in Paris and Milan have also imposed penalties on the French company in a patent infringement case filed by Italian two-wheeler manufacturer Piaggio Group.

The patent in question relates to the control system which allows a three-wheeled vehicle to tilt sideways like a conventional motorcycle.

This technology is used in the Piaggio MP3 scooter as well as Peugeot Metropolis.

Gautam Sen, a Paris-based auto industry expert, said the infringement case came as a surprise to him.

“The Peugeot

has been in production since 2013 and has sold over 20,000 units, ”he told ET. “For Piaggio, challenging him now is a bit strange. Unless there are new developments, more than we see. ”

Several other two-wheeler manufacturers, including Yamaha and many Chinese brands, also use this technology and do not face such patent infringement issues, Sen said.

“Peugeot is at the forefront of advanced technology in scooters and motorcycles and they don’t really need to copy,” he said.

The new version of the Metropolis arrived in 2020.

Piaggio said in a statement that it won European patent infringement lawsuits against Peugeot Motorcycles in Paris and Milan.

Mahindra declined to comment on requests sent by ET.

Peugeot Motorcycles are expected to appeal the two decisions, experts said.

The Paris court, in its decision, inflicted damages of 1.5 million euros on Peugeot Motorcycles for patent infringement, in addition to additional penalties for each infringing vehicle and legal costs.

The decision also prohibits Peugeot Motorcycles from producing, promoting, marketing, importing, exporting, using and / or owning any three-wheeled scooter using the control system patented by Piaggio Group on French territory, according to the Piaggio press release.

The Milan court banned Peugeot Motorcycles from importing, exporting, marketing and advertising (offline and online) Peugeot Metropolis in Italy. A fine of € 6,000 will be invoiced for each vehicle sold after a period of 30 days from the announcement of the conviction. Peugeot Motorcycles must also withdraw all counterfeit vehicles from sale in Italy within 90 days, or pay an additional fine of € 10,000 for each day of delay in fulfilling the order, the Piaggio statement added.

If Peugeot Motorcycles loses its appeals against the verdicts, it will have to revamp the Metropolis maxi-scooter, experts have said.

Meanwhile, Mahindra is not new to these infringement issues. In 2018, the US trade regulator declared that the Mahindra Roxor all-terrain utility vehicle violated the design of Fiat Chrysler’s Jeep. In May of this year, Mahindra was in a design infringement case in Australia with Stellantis, owner of Jeep and M&M Thar Design which Fiat claims violates the Jeep Wrangler design. Mahindra then said he had no plans to sell Thar to Australia in its current form.

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