Tesla sued for $2 billion lawsuit alleging violation of patents

Tesla sued for $2 billion lawsuit alleging violation of patents

According to MarketWatch, the rival company is asking $2 billion in damages from Tesla, claiming the design of the Semi has been unlawfully inspired by the one of the electric truck in unveiled back in 2016. The complaint outlines specific design patents for the Nikola One, the company's latest hydrogen-electric truck, it believes were infringed upon by Elon Musk's company.

"Tesla never responded", Nikola claims.

Details since the Semi's introduction have been few and far between, but if all goes according to plan, the Tesla rig will enter production next year.

A statement from Nikola says, "We are simply protecting our intellectual property.", while a Tesla spokesperson said, "It is patently obvious there is no merit to this lawsuit".

Nikola alleges Tesla copied its unique (and patented) "wrap windshield, mid-entry door, fuselage, fender, side cladding, and the overall design of a semi".

Additionally, Nikola says it was able to identify that Tesla's truck might be infringing on its designs from secret sources over internet leading up to Tesla's mid- November reveal in 2017. By August 2016, Nikola said it had more than 300 orders totalling over 7,000 trucks-a value of $2.3 billion.

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Neither Nikola nor Tesla has delivered a semi truck to a customer yet. Nikola alleges Tesla copied the design and even advertised the view drivers had from its vehicle.

Still, on November 16, Tesla unveiled its truck and "almost immediately" received orders and saw its market share jump by about $2 billion, the suit says.

Nikola filed a series of design patents with the US Patent and Trademark Office in December 2015 covering an electric heavy-duty truck.

In January of this year, Nikola announced plans to build a 1 million square-foot plant in Phoenix to produce both the Nikola One and smaller Nikola Two models, with the facility expected to be completed in 2024. In March, Tesla sent two of its trucks on an inaugural journey from its Sparks, Nevada-based Gigafactory to its Fremont, California-based vehicle manufacturing facility. Nikola claims to have formally asked them to delay the Semi unveiling until things got sorted out.

A Nikola spokeswoman said via email that the company won't provide additional comment on the lawsuit, which "speaks for itself".

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