Tag: Patent

By on July 26, 2011

Over the last several years, Toyota has fought off suits by a firm called Paice, which claimed to own patents on technology used in Toyota’s hybrid drivetrains. Toyota settled that dispute a year ago, but now Bloomberg reports that another firm is going after Toyota’s hybrid Intellectual Property (IP). According to the report

Efficient Drivetrains Inc., based in Palo Alto, California, has an exclusive license from the University of California for use of the technology, including the way electricity is drawn from a battery to power an electric motor and an internal combustion engine, according to a July 20 federal court complaint filed by Toyota in San Jose… The five patents at issue also include technology, invented by EDI co-founder Andy Frank, on ways to control the power output of an internal combustion engine and a method to draw electricity to operate the electric motor and the internal combustion engine, together or separately depending on driving conditions

You can read Toyota’s complete filing here.

(Read More…)

By on July 9, 2011

 

Ford’s Sync doesn’t get a break. It attracted undue attention from LaHood’s distracted driving crusade. Consumer Reports had issues with the system. Sync sank Ford in the 2011 J.D. Power Initial Quality Survey. Can it get any worse?

Yes, it can. Ford is being sued for patent infringement. (Read More…)

By on July 19, 2010

On Friday Ford announced [via Automotive News [sub]] that it had reached an amicable resolution to a long-standing dispute over hybrid drivetrain technology with Paice, a company that claims to have invented technology crucial to the operation of hybrid powerplants. Ford uses the disputed technology  in its Fusion Hybrid and Escape Hybrid vehicles, and it will likely pay royalties to Paice as a result of the settlement, although Ford refuses to give any details on the agreement. Toyota is also locked in a legal dispute with Paice, after a judge ordered Toyota to pay Paice royalties for hybrid models it sells in the US. Toyota continues to litigate an International Trade Commission complaint by Paice aimed at barring the sale of Toyota hybrids in the US. [UPDATE: Toyota has just announced [via BusinessWeek that it has settled with Paice as well, effectively bringing years of controversy to a close. Details of the settlement have not been made clear, but Paice’s Alex Severinsky says that this vindicates his long-standing claim to being the inventor of modern hybrid drivetrains.

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