What's in a name? In Lyon, France, it can mean the difference between Daimler running its Car2go car-sharing service and taking a little break.

Despite a report that Car2go has "stopped immediately and that the customers will be fully refunded" in Lyon, Daimler is currently "suspending" its Car2go service in Lyon because of the long-standing Car' Go vehicle rental service. You can see a hokey Car' Go video (in French) below.

Juliane Mühling, corporate communications manager for Car2go, told AutoblogGreen that the suspension will last for an "indefinite period of time" while the two sides, Car' Go and Car2go France SAS, work through the court process. "The French court ruled that the name sounds too similar to another company name and that this could cause confusion," she said. "We respect the decision but do not understand the reasons given, and will therefore examine all legal options to regain the right to use the globally recognized brand name car2go in France. The court decision does not impact any other car2go locations."

For now, Mühling said, Car2go will repay members' registration fee, even though they have been supportive on Facebook.





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Answers from Juliane Mühling, corporate communications manager for Car2go

1. Why did you stop the service?
We (car2go) are suspending our service in Lyon for an indefinite period of time following a court decision in a law suit regarding the car2go brand name. Due to French legal rules we have to do this immediately. The French court ruled that the name sounds too similar to another company name and that this could cause confusion. We respect the decision but do not understand the reasons given, and will therefore examine all legal options to regain the right to use the globally recognized brand name car2go in France. The court decision does not impact any other car2go locations. car2go will continue to expand its services internationally.

2. I would just like to know if the information in the article I found earlier is accurate?
No, the report is not correct at all. Following is correct:
  • We are not leaving Lyon but we need to suspend our service for an indefinite period of time.
  • We do not intend to leave Lyon or France. France is an important market for our mobility service. Therefore, we are looking into all legal options to regain the right to use our global brand in France.
  • The law suit has nothing to do with Daimler. Instead, one party in this legal action is the company car2go France SAS, the defendant.
  • We did not suspend our service at the request of another company. We did this following a court decision.
  • The brand name "car2go" has been properly registered and the law suit came as a surprise.
  • All customers have been informed of the service interruption immediately. We will repay the registration fee to all registered members.
3. I would like to know why Daimler decided suspend out rather than simply change the name of the system in that particular city?
car2go is a globally recognized brand name for our innovative urban mobility solution. This is why we are examining all legal measures to regain the right to use it in France.

4. Were there any other reasons for car2go to suspend the services?
No, we are only suspending our service due to the court decision. Following French law we have to do this immediately. Since its start in February car2go Lyon performed in line with our expectations.

5. Does car2go have any plans to take legal action and re-enter Lyon at a future date?
Yes, and we will examine all legal options to regain the right to use our global brand car2go in France.