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Report: Toyota secures trademark for Supra name

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Report: Toyota secures trademark for Supra name

by Jeremy Korzeniewski (RSS feed) on Jul 30th 2010 at 9:27AM

Toyota FT-HS Concept – Click above for high-res image gallery

What's in a name? Well now, that'd depend on the name, wouldn't it? For instance, while both are sporty cars from Ford, there's a big difference to Blue Oval fans when discussing the merits of the Ford Mustang versus the Ford Probe. When talk turns to Toyota, the name that conjures up the most memories in the hearts and minds of enthusiasts is 'Supra.'

Despite all this, the Japanese automaker inexplicably let its trademark for the iconic Supra moniker pass by in 2006. Luckily, nobody tried to punish Toyota by trying to snap up the name, and now the chance is over. According to Car and Driver, Toyota has reapplied for the trademark on the Supra name, and now has three years to make use of it.

This revelation just so happens to coincide with reports that Toyota president Akio Toyoda wants "to see the next Supra tested in the near future." Kinda makes you wonder, doesn't it? We're thinking that it's unlikely that Toyota would use the Supra name for its long-anticipated FT-86 revival, so we'll of course be keeping our ears to the ground for any sportscar news coming out of Japan.



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Report: Toyota Re-Trademarks Supra Name

By Nelson Ireson


July 30th, 2010

The Toyota FT-86 is still on track, according to the latest reports, but will it wear a Supra badge? That's the speculation making the rounds on the Web today as word of Toyota's re-trademarking of the legendary Supra badge breaks loose.

The FT-86 isn't the only possibility, but it may be the best. Subaru is already thought to be working on a hot STI version of the joint-project coupe, and it would make sense if Toyota is going to revive the Supra nameplate to stick it on that model. That would leave the new FT-86 to wear a revived Celica badge, rebuilding the relationship the Celica and Supra had in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Of course, an as-yet unheard of car may be the one to bear the badge. What that might be is anybody's guess, however, so we're sticking with the souped-up FT-86 as the best candidate. When will we see the Supra's return? Not likely until early 2012, as the Celica/FT-86 it would be based on isn't due until November 2011. That's a long wait, and a lot can happen in the interim, so we'll keep our antennae out for the latest as it develops.



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By Andrew Ganz

Earlier this month, Toyota applied to renew its long-expired trademark on the Supra name in the United States. Although the company is mostly mum on the subject, an easy-to-reach conclusion would suggest that Toyota could revive the historic badge for its upcoming FT-86 sports car.

Toyota apparently let the Supra trademark expire in 2006 and the automaker never bothered to renew one of its best-known nameplates until earlier this month. According to Car and Driver, Toyota filed an application to take ownership of the Supra name on July 16 with the U.S. Patent and Trademark office.

The magazine did talk with Toyota communication VP Mike Michels, who said that the automaker registered the name “provisionally” in an effort to preserve ownership of the historic name. This is hardly uncommon among automakers who hold onto model name trademarks long after discontinuing a line, although Toyota’s decision certainly comes at a unique time.



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