Paice LLC: “Hey Ford, About Those Plug-In Energis and Hybrids…You’ve Been Served”
Paice LLC is known for its patents covering how electric motors and their gas counterparts interact with each other to bring high efficiencies, low emissions and most importantly – no loss of performance in so doing.
In 2005 Paice won a high profile infringement trial against Toyota, and just a scant 5 years later the companies reached a global settlement that had threatened to place an import ban on the likes of the Toyota Prius.
Now, according to the Detroit News, after collaborating with the US auto maker in over “100 meetings and interactions with Ford to help the automaker develop a hybrid engine that would increase gasoline mileage without losing performance,” its Ford’s turn to receive a 50 page complaint and subsequent lawsuit from Paice.
Why now and not 5+ years ago? Ford licensed one of Paice’s patents in 2010, and as part of that deal there was a ‘litigation cease fire’ between the companies until at least January 1st, 2014 to give them “time to reach a broader settlement.”
It seems like as soon as Ford inked that deal they weren’t so interested in reaching that settlement as Paice says that the negotiations where “short and one-sided.”
So now, time is up!
The lawsuit includes technology found in most of Ford’s hybrid lineup, including the likes of the C-Max Energi and the Fusion Energi.
“The truth is that Ford built its new hybrid system by relying heavily on the hybrid vehicle inventions it learned from Paice,” said the company in the 50 page complaint.
The Detroit News further reports that Ford was not caught off guard by this action, as they attempted to pre-empt this lawsuit by filing a complaint in December motioning the court to not allow Paice to file a their own complaint as part of their 2010 deal.
While this latest Paice lawsuit doesn’t outline the amount of money the company is looking for, it does note that Paice made available their technology for $150 per vehicles in 1999.