This battle of the brands stretches back to last year when news broke of Audi’s intention to take Nio to court. The Ingolstadt-based manufacturer alleged that Nio had overstepped the mark. “The opponent chose model designations for the European market, which, in our opinion, infringes Audi brands,” said a representative at the time.
According to the court’s reasoning, there’s reason to believe that consumers may assume Nio’s ES 6, ES 7, and ES 8 models are electric versions of Audi’s models and that the vehicles all hail from the same manufacturer. “There is, therefore, a transfer danger of confusion through association that goes beyond pure association.”
It’s not over for Nio, though, as this is only the first instance of the court case. Nio is expected to overturn this in a higher court but is prohibited from advertising these models in Germany for the time being. Interestingly, Nio has already renamed the ES7 as the EL7.