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Encyclopedia Hoonatica: Thieved Car Names

Peter Tanshanomi August 10, 2010 Encyclopedia Hoonatica 133 Comments

Last Friday, we asked you which good car names are yet to be used. Manufacturers nowadays vigilantly guard their trademarks, and litigate over the use of their trademarks at the drop of a hat. Ford famously sued Kawasaki over the use of Zephyr, Audi got in a legal tussle with Nissan over the letter Q (yes, really), and Carol Shelby has sued…well, pretty much everyone.

It wasn’t always that way. American Motors blithely trotted out the AMC Matador in ’71 without so much as a cease-and-desist letter coming their way from Chrysler, despite the Matador Dodge had produced a decade earlier.

So, what model nameplates can you name that were used by two different manufacturers?

As is the rule with these, read the comments first and try not to duplicate.

DIFFICULTY: A bit of a head-scratcher, ain’it?

  • Jim

    Ford Phaeton and VW Phaeton

    • tonyola

      There were lots of cars referred to as Phaeton before World War II. It was a generic term for what we now would call a four-door convertible. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phaeton_body

    • Phaeton is a tricky one since it used to describe a body style. However, I believe you have succeeded in finding two vehicle whose names were indeed Phaeton and not just to describe a body style.

      • Kind of like "spider/spyder" …could be a body style, could be a proper name.

  • JayP

    VW's first name for the Corrado supposed to be Taifun (or something close) to follow Scirocco.
    But GM beat them to it with the Typhoon.

    That's all I got.

  • Hopman

    Mercury Cyclone and GMC Syclone. Different spelling, same idea.

  • Charles_Barrett
    • Age_of_Aerostar

      a 3-way! nice!

      • Charles_Barrett

        Well, DeSoto and Plymouth were both Mopar marques, but seeing as they're both dead now (and DeSoto is old enough to sound antique and exotic), I guess I can count all three… 😉

        • Age_of_Aerostar

          (hides because he forgot the Plymouth/DeSoto connection)

          But my original comment stands, it counts!

    • chrystlubitshi

      i've been in GMC, Chevy, and plymouth suburbans from a large variety of years (mostly of the first two makes) … but DeSoto has to be the best…. as far as looks go. i'd take one of those any day. thanks for posting CB! i've missed seeing you around!

  • Honda Odyssey, but they stole from themselves.

  • name_too_long

    Alfa Romeo Spider / Fiat Spider / Toyota Spyder

  • Lotte

    A Toyota Mark II is a sedan, sort of a RWD Camry. A Lincoln Continental Mark II is a personal luxury coupe, as I have recently discovered.

    Along the same line (and companies) is the Toyota Mark X, which is still a RWD Camry, but the Lincoln Mark X, or MKX, is now a crossover.

  • OA5599

    Cadillac Fleetwood and Fleetwood RV
    Ford and Willys Jeep
    Ford Five Hundred and Fiat 500
    Dodge and Plymouth Neon
    Cushman Eagle, AMC Eagle, Eagle division of Chrysler, and "the Eagle has landed"

    • Hopman

      The Dodge & Plymouth Neon were the EXACT SAME CAR!!! The only different parts were the badges on the hood & trunk.

    • The 21-century Ford Five Hundred is always spelled out as words, not digits. That's what they have a trademark on.

  • ptschett

    Chrysler Falcon / Ford Falcon

    Chrysler used the name for a 2-seat concept car, which would have been a Corvette/Thunderbird competitor.

    <img src="http://static.howstuffworks.com/gif/1950s-chrysler-dodge-desoto-and-plymouth-concept-cars-13.jpg&quot; width="500"/>

    It's rumored that Chrysler was going to use the Falcon name for the car we know as the Valiant, but Ford edged them out at the patent office.

    <img src="http://static.howstuffworks.com/gif/1960_falcon.jpg&quot; />

  • P161911
  • P161911
  • P161911
  • earlofhalflight

    How about Hillman Avenger and Dodge Avenger? While there was a corporate link at one point, by the time the Dodge Avenger came along that link had been long broken.

    <img src="http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3144/2643708522_2b95f19cee.jpg"&gt;

    <img src="http://www.koreanstyling.dk/webshop/images/2008DodgeAvenger.jpg"&gt;

    Which brings to mind another – Sunbeam Tiger, Messerschmitt "Tiger", Panhard Tiger and Hillman Avenger Tiger.

  • P161911
    • tonyola

      The Daytona name is considered "unofficial" by Ferrari, even though everyone uses it. The official name is 365 GTB/4. Packard used the Daytona name before either Dodge or Ferrari for the Panther-Daytona roadster, of which a few were built.
      <img src="http://www.remarkablecars.com/main/packard/packard-00008-1.jpg&quot; width="500/">

  • P161911
    • name_too_long

      Holy sh*t! A Sebring I want!

  • P161911

    Maserati 3500(basically the same as the Sebring):
    <img src="http://www.qv500.com/maserati%203500%20p3%205.jpg"&gt;

    Chevy/GMC 3500
    <img src="http://www.thedieselpage.com/duramax/news2005GMC3500.jpg"&gt;

    • That's stretching it. 3500 is just weight series.

  • P161911
  • P161911
  • FuzzyPlushroom
    • FЯeeMan

      Now that's one funky looking Volvo! Thank you for the education!

    • Plecostomus

      Good god, it's the 1986 Honda Accord Hatch's swedish cousin!!

    • retro

      I'm guessing that through some automotive shenanigans that concept eventually became the Citroen BX:

      <img src="http://ploader.net/files/9bfa877193bb88956fead0cef9813bb4.jpg"&gt;

      • FuzzyPlushroom

        Good eye! Yes, Bertone's design instead ended up at Citroën, where it was carried out quite nicely, in my eyes. I can even forgive the lost pop-up headlamps.

  • P161911
  • P161911
  • ptschett
  • tonyola
  • Mad_Hungarian

    Edsel Pacer and AMC Pacer (No one should EVER use that name again!)
    AMC Hornet and Hudson Hornet
    Studebaker Commander and Jeep Commander
    Studebaker Land Cruiser and Toyota Land Cruiser
    Mercury (Comet) Voyager and Plymouth Voyager
    IKA Torino and Ford Torino

  • Dan

    AMC SX/4 and Suzuki SX4
    Crosley Super Sport and Chevrolet's Super Sport designation
    Crosley CoBra (tin block engine) and Shelby/Ford Cobra

    not automotive, but still:
    AMX (French tank manufacturer) and AMC AMX

  • Age_of_Aerostar

    Yes, it's a stretch, but people have probably stopped looking now, so I can post it:

    Voyager / Voyager

    <img src="http://static.howstuffworks.com/gif/autoreview/400×266/1991-95-Plymouth-Voyager-91108231990207.jpg"&gt;

    <img src="http://remicadedream.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/Star-Trek-Voyager-p35.jpg&quot; width="400">

    • Charles_Barrett

      Bravo…!

  • Hopman

    Mercury Bobcat meet the Bobcat skid steer!

  • Jim7

    Volvo C10; Chevy C10.

  • Alff
  • Alff
  • Kita Ikki

    Buick Century – Toyota Century