Nikola vs. Tesla design patent law suit just began


Nikola Corporation filed a law suit against Tesla, Inc., alleging that Tesla infringes on their hydrogen truck design patent.

Nikola is seeking 2 billion US dollars in damages from Tesla. The complains direct to 3 specific patents Nikola holds, all relating to the design of Nikola One semi-truck: the fuselage, the wrap windshield and the mid-entry door design. Nikola claims that Tesla’s ‘substantially similar design’ caused confusion among customers, diverting sales from Nikola to Tesla. Nikola alerted Tesla in 2017 about Nikola’s pending patent applications, demanding Tesla do not infringe their patents, with no reply received.

Besides pre-order sales, Nikola claims, Tesla also attracted additional investors as a result of unveiling the Tesla Semi. Tesla’s stock price was $302.99 the day before the unveiling and $315.05 after the unveiling. This corresponds to a jump of roughly $2 billion in Tesla’s market value.

It will be interesting to follow this law suit in the upcoming months and not simply because of the naming of the two companies (referring to the full name of the inventor Nikola Tesla).

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