Tesla Motors Settles Trademark Dispute With China

By @MeaganKay m.clark@ibtimes.com on
Tesla In China
People look at a Tesla car at a company showroom in Beijing on July 9, 2014. Tesla has begun delivering a right-hand-drive version of the Model S in Hong Kong and is aiming for the highly protected Japanese auto market this year. Wang Zhao/AFP/Getty Images

Tesla Motors Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA) has reportedly settled a trademark dispute that had threatened its plans to expand in China.

Zhan Baosheng, owner of a skincare company called Cengceng Inc., has claimed he would build an electric sedan with state-owned Chinese carmaker Guangzhou Automobile (GAC) and registered rights to the California-based company’s name in China before Tesla entered the market, displaying the distinctive Tesla logo on his websites. Tesla told Bloomberg Tuesday that it has agreed to settle the trademark dispute “completely and amicably.”

Under the agreement, Zhan will transfer website names he had registered in China, including tesla.cn and teslamotors.cn, to Tesla, according to the company.

Tesla began selling cars in China in April. Tesla’s CEO and founder Elon Musk said last week that the carmaker will speed up production of the Model S and the Model X sport-utility vehicle to 100,000 units a year by the end of 2015 in the U.S. and that production in China may match U.S. production by that time. 

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