Lexus’ parent, the Toyota Motor Company (TMC) fails in bid to trademark its distinctive spindle grille in Australia.
The latest-gen LX 600 debuted last year with the distinctive oversized Lexus spindle grille that makes it standout on the road.
However, the IP Australia found that the grille did not distinguish Lexus models from the cars of other brands.
It says that the grille served as both functional and visual purposes, adding that it did not stand alone as a trademark.
Toyota had argued that the grille should be trademarked cos it is used as a badge of origin and also associated with Lexus.
Lexus’ parent, the Toyota Motor Company, has failed in an attempt to trademark the distinctive oversized Lexus spindle grille that debuted on the latest-gen LX 600 in Australia.
After a hearing in March, IP Australia, the federal agency that administers intellectual property rights and legislation relating to patents, ruled against the application by Toyota in a decision handed down on May 31.
Toyota had argued at the hearing the grille should be trademarked because it is used as a badge of origin and also recognised and associated with Lexus.
However, the IP Australia Hearing Officer found that the grille did not distinguish Lexus models from the cars of other brands, adding that many vehicle have similar grilles.
Australian magazine Carsales cites the bureau’s Hearing Officer saying the spindle grille served as both functional and visual purposes, adding that it did not stand alone as a trademark.
“Any person or company can apply for registration of a trademark,” an IP Australia spokesperson told Carsales.
“They do not need specific grounds under which to apply.
“There are, however, grounds for rejecting some of those applications, which is what has happened here.
“The ground that was used to reject this application relates to whether what has been applied for can be used to tell apart the goods of a particular trader from the goods of other traders.
“For example, a person should not easily be allowed a trademark for ‘apple’ if they are a fruit grower, while for a computer manufacturer, ‘apple’ would be okay.”