GM, Ford to settle lawsuit over BlueCruise name

Hayley Harding
The Detroit News

General Motors Co. and Ford Motor Co. have agreed to settle a lawsuit that focused on the name of Ford's hands-free driver assistance technology, BlueCruise, the automakers said Sunday night.

It was not clear what the resolution was — neither company commented on specifics when reached Sunday night — but GM representative Darryll Harrison said in an email that the companies "resolved the case and related proceedings amicably."

Earlier this year, GM and Cruise, GM's majority-owned autonomous vehicle company, filed a lawsuit claiming that Ford's use of the name "BlueCruise" "is likely to cause confusion, mistake, or to deceive, as to the affiliation, connection, or association between Ford and both GM and Cruise." 

Ford's BlueCruise allows hands-free driving on 100,000 miles of desgnated, divided highways in the US and Canada.

The BlueCruise name "is likely to cause irreparable harm to Cruise, GM, and their related CRUISE and Super Cruise brands," according to GM's filings. The company sought damages, alleging that Ford was infringing upon its trademark rights. 

Ford, in response, called the suit "frivolous."

"Drivers for decades have understood what cruise control is, every automaker offers it, and “cruise” is common shorthand for the capability," Ford representative Mike Levine told The Detroit News in July.

On Sunday night, Levine said in an email that Ford was "planning to settle the lawsuit with GM." Neither company offered further comment on the suit.

Levine said Ford expects to announce BlueCruise will be available in additional Ford vehicles moving forward.

hharding@detroitnews.com

@Hayley__Harding