Tesla Gets Use Of Its Name Back In China – Goodbye Tuosule Auto Sales

JAN 24 2014 BY JAY COLE 17

Tesla Is Now Free To Operate In China Under Their Own Brand Name!

Tesla Is Now Free To Operate In China Under Their Own Brand Name!

More good news for Tesla Motors in China today as the company has defeated what we consider to be a “trademark troll” that had been holding for ransom squatting on their brand name for years.

Tesla Model S Goes On Sales This Week In China From About $121,000 USD

Tesla Model S Goes On Sales This Week In China From About $121,000 USD

Previously, a Chinese resident trademarked the name Tesla in 12 different automotive categories  – hoping one day to make a big score if the Californian automaker decided to come to China.

It turned out that he actually could have made some decent money off Tesla, as the company offered him over $300,000 for the rights back; an offer that was refused with the hopes to get more out of the company.

As it happened, Tesla drew a line in the sand right there and refused to negotiate further – instead registering itself as Tuosule Auto Sales Co. Ltd.,while it continued to fight to get its name back in Chinese courts.

Thankfully we can now report (through Reuters) that Tesla has won a court decision over the use of its iconic name, which is actually to be known as “Te Si La” to Chinese consumers.

“We went to court and we won.  The court has given use right to use the name, which is why you see the Chinese name in our store now.” – Veronica Wu, vice president of Tesla’s China operations

Separately when asked if Tesla had future plans on actually building electric cars in China, Ms. Wu said they current had “no plans” yet, but…

“Right now we are not considering (that) as yet…The most important task right now, now that we have announced our pricing strategy, is to focus on getting the right car and making sure we have the right service network, and making sure the Chinese customer is happy,” she said. “Happy customers are the best advocate of your product, right?”

Tesla aims to sell “30 to 35” percent of all international sales to China in 2014 – which might better help us to understand the company’s decision this week to price the Model S so aggressively in that country.


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17 Comments on "Tesla Gets Use Of Its Name Back In China – Goodbye Tuosule Auto Sales"

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Elon fight bullies well done and the same will happen to the Dealer association if it reach the Supreme Court.

So how much yuan did this guy get? If it’s 0, that’s a big whoops, since he could have bought 2 Teslas with the $300k.

And if Tesla didn’t have to pay $300K, that’s money for 2 more Superchargers 🙂

He got nothing, plus he got to pay his own legal bills. Makes you feel good doesn’t it, (=

Yes, this is the best outcome. Worst outcome would have been the Chinese Gov. taking this guy “for a ride”.

so is it really “Tesla” or “Te Si La”????

“Te Si La” is the official romanization of the Chinese pronunciation and translation of “Tesla” (Nikola Tesla). By using this, people will immediately know the company is named after Nikola Tesla.


thank you jake 🙂

Congrats Tesla!!

I see a lot of naivite here. Guys, you see the World the American way, somebody does something unfair, Tesla takes him to court, Tesla wins, justice was served. Obviously that’s how it should be and that is one of the reasons why I strongly considered staying in your wonderful country + I had a great time. However things don’t work so simply in China and in the rest of the World really (perhaps besides Western Europe and few other countries). What most likely happened is that Tesla paid to its Chinese consultant with very, very good ties to the Chinese government and negotiatons started. End result: Tesla gets its name but it will price its vehicles with the same margin as in the US. Everybody is happy at the end.

So True Boris…
Most people don’t understand that conducting business in the US is 180 degrees opposite of conducting business in China.
In US: It’s contracts/specs/documents then friendship then celebration/dinner.
In China: It’s celebration/dinner then friendship then contracts/specs/docs.
Successful relationships are when either side recognizes this difference and adapts.

This is very simplified, but it gets the point across. Networking and who you know are extremely important in China.

Besides, when you do business in china you get to eat a lot. And try not to request any rice when they are impressing you with dinner.

Good. Regarding the question of building a plant there in China.
This would probably the best decision, all things being equal, as it would
reduce overall costs, mainly from shipping.
Problem is the Chinese, as a culture, are famous/infamous for stealing technology.
GM closed a plant there recently and just came out and said point-blank that it was
due to pilferage, thievery, on a massive scale.
I had an Asian roommate who thought nothing of stealing software, games off the internet.
A nice, polite, humble guy in many respects, but when it came to software piracy he had no qualms whatsoever. I know that is anecdotal evidence, but in my opinion it is accurate, and good reason not to go into any joint ventures with the Chinese, especially when it comes to giving them proprietary technology. At least force them to reverse engineer it, they care nothing for patents.
At least their courts overturned this blatant example of trollery. Probably because no high government official was due to get a piece of the action.

Musk is quoted in Bloomberg saying “Long-term there’s no question we’ll have a factory in China,” he said. “There is an argument for having that be our first major factory outside the U.S.”. Seems pretty confident a factory will be built there.

Solar does not work as well in the more polluted parts of the country… 🙁

They don’t need solar. They’re building about one coal fired facility each week. Yet another reason the US effort to reduce emissions is local, not global.

Well if we really get picky about the whole thing then perhaps the original Tesla family, that is Nicola Tesla’s family, should throw their name in the hat. (Sorry, I could not resist)

Seriously. Tesla’s name is actually 特斯拉? Though the characters are used only for transliteration in this context, 特斯拉 sounds vaguely like “bull castration”.