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Tesla Sues Indian Battery Maker For Use of ‘Tesla Power’ Name

US EV and battery giant sues Indian battery maker in the Delhi High Court over its use of “Tesla Power” brand

Visitors check a Tesla electric vehicle, the Model 3, at a showroom of the US EV-maker in Beijing, February 4, 2023. Photo: Reuters


Elon Musk’s Tesla has sued an Indian battery maker in a court in New Delhi for violating its trademark through use of the brand name “Tesla Power” to promote its products.

At a hearing at Delhi High Court this week, it sought damages and a permanent injunction against the company from a local judge.

It said the Indian company had continued advertising its products with the “Tesla Power” brand despite a cease-and-desist notice sent in April 2022, according to details of the proceedings posted on the court website on Friday.


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The Tesla Energy Powerwall Home Battery was unveiled by Elon Musk at an event in California in 2015.


During the hearing, the Indian company, Tesla Power India Pvt Ltd, argued its main business is to make “lead acid batteries” and claimed it had no intention of making electric vehicles.

The judge allowed the Indian firm three weeks to submit written responses after it handed over a set of documents in support of its defence, the court record shows.

Musk’s Tesla, which is incorporated in the US state of Delaware, accused the Indian company of using trade names “Tesla Power” and “Tesla Power USA”.

The court record included screenshots of a website that showed that Tesla Power USA LLC was also headquartered in Delaware and had been “acknowledged for being a pioneer and leader in introducing affordable batteries” with “a very strong presence in India”.

Its Tesla PowerWall unit was unveiled at an event in California – live-streamed on the internet – amid plans for Musk’s company to make wall-mounted battery packs designed to store renewable energy at people’s homes.


‘We never claimed to be Musk’s Tesla’

A Tesla Power representative said it had been present in India much before Musk’s Tesla and had all government approvals. “We have never claimed to be related to Elon Musk’s Tesla,” Tesla Power’s Manoj Pahwa said.

Tesla told the judge it discovered the Indian company was using its brand name in 2022 and has unsuccessfully tried stop it from doing so, forcing it to file the lawsuit.

The case comes after Musk cancelled his planned visit to India on April 21 to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Days later, Musk made a surprise visit to China and met PM Li Qiang, which led to progress towards a roll-out its advanced driver assistance package. But some Indian commentators called the sudden change of plans a snub.

The Tesla India trademark case will next be heard on May 22.


  • Reuters with additional input and editing by Jim Pollard



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Jim Pollard

Jim Pollard is an Australian journalist based in Thailand since 1999. He worked for News Ltd papers in Sydney, Perth, London and Melbourne before travelling through SE Asia in the late 90s. He was a senior editor at The Nation for 17+ years.


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