The sales figures of Toyota hybrid vehicles in Japan and the rest of the globe are close to amazing as they lead the pack in the hybrid segment. What rolls out of their factories attracts consumers including the recently launched HS 250h under the Lexus badge. There is something blocking Toyota from really to fully bloom in the hybrid market, patent issues in the United states prevents them from importing some hybrid models.
It is up to the U.S. court to decide on a case filed by Paice LLC with the International Trade Commission in Washington, D.C. Paice claims that they own several patents to engines for hybrid vehicles. The complaint serves as a hurdle for importing Toyota models into the U.S. market. Vehicles like the Prius, Camry Hybrid, Highlander hybrid, and some hybrid units of Lexus might be banned if the court favors Paice.
In 2005, Paice edge on the legal battle that Toyota used Paice’s invention in making the drive trains for the RX400h of Lexus, Highlander, and Prius. The next trial in October will explore the infringement claims for the production of the Camry hybrid.