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FEBRUARY 10, 2011

Ferrari rebrands F1 car after dispute with Ford

Ferrari has announced that it has renamed it's new 2011 F1 chassis the "F150th Italia" to avoid confusion with the Ford F-150 truck.

Ferrari named it's new car the F150, in recognition of the 150th anniversary of the unification of Italy this year.

The American auto maker Ford has taken Ferrari to court, suing Ferrari for trademark infringement. Ford's F-150 truck is the top-selling vehicle in the United States, and is seeking unspecified damages.

Ford's complaint said, "Ferrari has misappropriated the F-150 trademark in naming its new racing vehicle the 'F150' in order to capitalise on and profit from the substantial goodwill that Ford has developed in the F-150 trademark."

Ferrari has issued a release saying that as a matter of good faith that Ferrari will rebrand it's car the F150th Italia.

"On the subject of the name of the new Ferrari Formula 1 car, the Maranello company wishes to point out that it has sent a letter of reply to Ford, underlining the fact that the F150 designation (used as the abbreviated version of the complete name, which is Ferrari F150th Italia) never has, nor ever will be used as the name of a commercially available product - indeed there will definitely not be a production run of single-seaters. In fact, it has always been the case in the history of Scuderia names, that they represent the nomenclature of a racing car project and are linked to a chronological order with a technical basis, or in exceptional cases, to special occasions. This year, the decision was taken to dedicate the car name to a particularly significant event, the 150th anniversary of the Unification of Italy, an event of such great importance that the Italian government has declared, for this year only, a national holiday."

"For these reasons, Ferrari believes that its own contender in the forthcoming F1 championship cannot be confused with other types of commercially available vehicle of any sort whatsoever, nor can it give the impression that there is a link to another brand of road-going vehicle. Therefore it is very difficult to understand Ford's viewpoint on the matter."

"Despite this and to further prove it is acting in good faith and that it operates in a completely correct manner, Ferrari has decided to ensure that in all areas of operation, the abbreviated version will be replaced at all times with the full version, Ferrari F150 th Italia."