Recently it was revealed
that a Chinese car-maker, Shandong Huoyun Electromobile Co., was building a two seat electric car
that bore an uncanny resemblance to the Smart ForTwo
. When DaimlerChrysler heard about it, they weren't too thrilled and started to make noises about legal action. Production of the car started in Shandong in August, but was suspended in October. The Chinese company has decided to redesign the car to avoid legal action. The City Spirit, as it was called, was apparently designed from a toy model of the Smart purchased over the internet. Shandong Houyun, executive Wang Fei said "We definitely did not expect our car to resemble the original," which seems rather implausible based on the model they used.
[Source: Automotive News - subscription required]