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Lexus Car, Lexis Data: Too Close for Federal Judge

January 03, 1989|Associated Press

NEW YORK — A federal judge has barred Toyota Motor Corp. from using the Lexus name for its new line of luxury cars on grounds that the name could infringe on the Lexis trademark used by Mead Data Central Inc. for its computerized data retrieval service.

The ruling Friday by U.S. District Judge David N. Edelstein was made in a lawsuit filed by Mead against the Japanese car maker and its U.S. affiliate, Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc., Mead said in a statement today.

Toyota obtained a temporary emergency stay of Edelstein's injunction on Monday, Mead said. A panel of the U.S. 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals is expected to hear arguments Thursday on whether the stay should be extended, said Mead, which is based in Dayton, Ohio.

If the stay is not extended, Toyota will be prohibited from using the Lexus name when exhibiting its new car line at the Detroit and Los Angeles automobile shows, which open Saturday, Mead said.

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