Trademark infringement disputes are a dime a dozen, though they’re not as rampant in the auto industry as in other businesses. One of the few that came to light was a logo dispute between French automaker Citroën and Swedish automaker Polestar, which reached a decision in 2020.
Based on Le Monde, the dispute is now over. A Citroën spokesman confirmed this with the French newspaper, saying that the complaint had been withdrawn and the case closed. Details of the resolution were not disclosed.
The dispute between Citroën and Polestar began in 2017 when Polestar became an independent car manufacturer with strong ties to Volvo. With that comes the new Polestar logo featuring two chevrons pointing at each other, forming a four-pointed star.
Citroën – and subsequently, DS Automobiles, both Stellantis brands – accused Polestar of counterfeiting and brand image infringement due to this logo change, citing comments from Internet users who saw the similarities.
In 2020, a French court dismissed a design infringement case, saying there were weak similarities between the logos plus their different layouts.
However, Citroën won the case against trademark infringement. The court declared a Polestar chevron shaped similar to Citroën’s identity as “branded with chevron.” Polestar could then indirectly benefit from the reputation of the Citroën chevron.
That said, the court ordered Polestar to pay Citroën 150,000 euros in damages for infringement of the trademark’s distinctive character. The Swedish automaker was also banned from using its logo in France for six months, so much so that people in France can’t access the Polestar site. Decisions are never revoked after that period; Citroën even petitioned to extend the decision across Europe earlier this year.
With the dispute now resolved, it looks like Polestar could start selling its cars in France, moving forward. An official announcement may be in progress, so we’ll be listening.