The drama between Jeep and Mahindra over the design of Mahindra’s Roxor continues. The Indian company introduced the off-road-only machine in question back in 2018, though Jeep quickly tried to stop its sale in the US, claiming it looked too much like its Wrangler. The two have gone back and forth since, though today Reuters reports that the US International Trade Commission has approved Mahindra’s design of the 2021 Roxor for sale in the US.
According to the report, Fiat Chrysler Automobile, Jeep’s parent company, said in a statement that it’s “disappointed” in the decisions, adding that it plans to appeal the decision. Mahindra said the ruling validated the automaker’s redesigned Roxor, which the company is now permitted to manufacture and distribute. The ITC ruled that the Roxor’s new design no longer violates Jeep’s intellectual property rights for the Wrangler.
Contention over the Roxor’s design ended up in front of a judge in late 2019, with the judge siding with FCA in the matter. The ruling found Mahindra violating the Wrangler’s design, and the company was barred from selling the Roxor here. The company gave the Roxor a redesign for 2020, though it wasn’t enough to appease the judges, sending the company back to the drawing board. The Roxor arrived with many Jeep CJ-like similarities in its design, such as the exterior hood latches, door cutouts, flat side and rear body panels, and more.
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Mahindra is likely hoping that the latest ruling can keep Jeep at bay, even though the American company plans to appeal the decision, which is still baffling. The Roxor isn’t a direct Wrangler competitor – it’s not even legal for road use in the US. It’s a side-by-side off-roader with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder turbo-diesel making just 62 horsepower (46 kilowatts) and 144 pound-feet (195 Newton-meters) of torque with a top speed of just 45 miles per hour (72 kilometers per hour).