The Tribunal Judiciaire of Paris and Court of Milan have just handed down rulings, finding Peugeot Motocycles guilty of infringing a European patent on the technology of the Piaggio MP3 three-wheel scooter with the Peugeot Metropolis model, which allows it to lean like a motorcycle.
While still subject to appeal, the decisions are a win for Piaggio, while Peugeot have been sentenced in France to pay damages of 1,500,000 euro, as well as further infringement and legal expenses, while prohibited from the sale and marketing of any models containing the patented technology.
In comparison, in Italy, Peugeot are prohibited from importing, marketing or selling three-wheel scooters with the technology, with fines for every vehicle sold 30 days after the announcement, with all currently available vehicles also having to be withdrawn from sale on threat of further fines.
Peugeot Motorcycles is owned by a subsidiary of Indian manufacturer Mahindra Two Wheelers, after being acquired in 2019. The Metropolis model had previously been described as being designed and built in France.
Piaggio Group has noted that its sizeable R&D investments have put it at the cutting edge of three-wheel vehicle technology, winning the Piaggio MP3 a leadership position on the market. The MP3 has been around since 2006, running dual front wheels and a single rear wheel, with a parallelogram style front steering setup, which allows the vehicle to lean, despite being a three-wheeler.
The suits are part of a wider range of activities against counterfeiting pursued by the Piaggio Group for years, involving continuous monitoring of competitor products and of international patent databases.
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