As IndianAutosBlog.com's exclusives for Auto Expo 2020’s continue, here’s the sound Maruti Suzuki intends to use for its EVs, including the Futuro-E concept's production version, and hybrids to replicate the noise of an exhaust system.
The sound in the audio clip embedded above is that of a jet aircraft. Suzuki had filed a trademark application for this sound in India in July 2019, but The Registrar of Trademarks objected it under S 9(1) (b) of The Trademarks Act 1999 in August 2019. The objection letter said that “the mark consists exclusively of words or indications which may serve in trade to designate the kind, intended purpose of the goods or other characteristics of the goods.”
In response, Suzuki’s appointed law firm to handle this case said (in October 2019) that the trademark it has submitted serves as a unique source identifier of its electrified/electric automobiles/vehicles. Interestingly, while boasting its Indian lineup with a hybrid powertrain, it mentions the Dzire and Vitara Brezza as well. Of course, with the 1.3L diesel engine bidding adieu, these models are bound to get a mild-hybrid system at some point.
The response further reveals that the plan is to use this sound to designate not only electric vehicles but also hybrid vehicles.
The applicant has adopted the subject trade mark to designate its unique upcoming line of hybrid and electric vehicles. As per the Indian Government’s commitments to comply with global emission norms, the Applicant intends to launch a new range of hybrid and electric vehicles.
Further in its appeal, Suzuki’s law firm says that the company intends to use this sound to enable customers to easily identify a Suzuki-branded hybrid/electric vehicle. It will help reducing driver fatigue over long distances as well. Also, it will aid the safety of pedestrians and motorists by serving as a warning. Below is what it argues in its conclusion:
Given the fact that hybrid/electric vehicles or any type of land automobiles do not emit the sound of a jet engine, the application of the subject sound trademark will not serve in trade to designate the kind, intended purpose of the goods in question.
Maruti Suzuki is said to unveil the production version of the Futuro-E concept later this year. It is working on full hybrids as well, and maybe the next-gen Ciaz will be its first HEV, likely in the second half of 2021.