Just received - as yet I cannot vouch for its factual base, BUT at face value Jaguar enthusiasts worldwide could be disgusted and dismayed by this developing example of corporate-brand bullying from the once-admirable company.
Defend the marque against criminal fakers, by all means - but sadistic persecution of lifelong genuine enthusiasm (as encouraged and supported in the past by those who made Jaguar great), potentially to kill competition to an already controversial replica-building programme of its own would - surely - be indefensible.
Sledgehammer and nut spring to mind. But there are real victims here...read on:
WORLDWIDE PRESS RELEASE Tuesday 9th February, 2021
- Jaguar – the unacceptable face of capitalism
- Big business crushes Swedish couple
- Impact on loyal Jaguar enthusiasts worldwide
- Alleged unethical behaviour
- International fund-raising seeks support to fight back
Shock Court Ruling
Jaguar Land Rover wins rights to the 1951 C-type – far reaching consequences for the whole replica community
Jaguar Land Rover recently sued a lifelong Jaguar enthusiast, Karl Magnusson (age 68), for copyright infringement after building a C-type replica in his home garage in Gothenburg Sweden, despite decades of global public approval of the replica industry from Jaguar themselves. Jaguar won. Unless overturned, the ruling is expected to set a global precedent for car manufacturers, opening up copyright proceedings for other car models across the global car industry.
Swedish pensioner and honorary member of the Swedish Jaguar Club, Karl Magnusson was invited by senior management to the Jaguar Land Rover Classic UK HQ in 2016 to give a presentation about his C-type project. “Our C-type replica was going to be the cherry on top of our small private collection of restored Jags,” says Magnusson. That collection has had to be sold to fund lawyer costs.
Despite two years of correspondence regarding future project collaboration, meetings and nothing but praise from Jaguar Classic management, Mr. and Mrs. Magnusson were sued in 2018 by Jaguar Land Rover for copyright infringement. A staggeringly uneven battle began between a global corporation and retired pensioners, who have had to put everything on the line.
“We feel so betrayed. They had every opportunity to warn me if I was doing something wrong.” says Karl Magnusson.
After a surprising verdict by the Stockholm District Court in December, Karl and Ann-Christine were found guilty of copyright infringement and their privately-built C-type replica deemed illegal and subject to destruction - a project inspired by passion that took nine years of research and labour to complete.
In addition, the Magnussons are required to pay Jaguar Land Rover’s legal costs of £450,000. Furthermore, JLR can also claim damages.
“We don’t understand why a multi-billion dollar company needs to destroy the lives of two grandparents. And this is just one of at least 1,500 replica C-types built globally in the past 45 years. The consequence of the verdict is that all owners of C-type replicas now risk being forced to destroy their cars when JLR comes after them,” said Ann-Christine.
As for the replica industry, this verdict giving a 70-year-old car shape copyright protection is likely to have far-reaching consequences - in essence, making all C-type replicas unlawful to display, sell or use on public roads or in other public circumstances, under threat of penalties and/or destruction.
While this is a verdict by a Swedish court, because of EU directives the judgement will be invoked in other EU countries, potentially threatening the entire European replica industry. Under the current understanding of relevant agreements, this can be invoked in the UK even after Brexit. Due to this verdict, other car makers can use this precedent and claim copyright of their historic models, threatening 10s of 1,000s of Ferrari, Ford GT40, Porsche, AC Cobra, Aston Martin and other replicas.
“We don’t understand where this has come from considering Jaguar's history of supporting the replica industry,” states Karl Magnusson.
“We feel it’s so hypocritical of Jaguar to sue us when their own senior management privately build, commission, race and own C-type replicas themselves.”
Over the years Jaguar have supported the replica industry in various ways. No less than three Jaguar CEOs have supplied close to 2,000 drawings to replica builders as well as given awards to replica builders. Three Jaguar senior managers and one Director, previous and present, have privately built and raced C-type replicas themselves.
“The Engineering Manager at JLR Classic, who met with us, was used as a witness against us in court, all the while keeping his own C-type replica in his garage.”
Since 2015, 25 historic Jaguar Land Rover Classic Challenge races have been held, and 5 more are planned this year, publicly inviting replicas. On YouTube official Jaguar Land Rover marketing films feature proud displays of replicas.
You can even pay to take the Jaguar Land Rover “Classic Drive” experience, which includes driving C-type and D-type replicas. None of them built by JLR.
JLR Classic Works are currently launching their own “continuation” replica E-types and C-types with the help of replica producers in the UK, who are the ones with the skill and knowledge to produce the parts. In other words, at the same time as JLR are calling replicas illegal and pursuing this in the courts, they financially support and cooperate with replica producers.
And it does not stop here: just google “JLR Replica” and the first hit takes you to an official Jaguar Land Rover dealership, selling US kit-car C-type replicas on their website. https://www.jlrclassics.com/cars/
Despite the initial setback, the Magnussons remain determined to continue the fight and proceed with an appeal. “Anyone who has been involved with classic cars would understand the absurdity of all Jaguar replicas suddenly becoming illegal. The court ruling is highly questionable to say the least, and we have a very strong appeal,” says Karl Magnusson.
The appeal process will put a further extreme financial strain on the retired couple and their family. “We are going to have to sell our house and all of our belongings if we lose an appeal. Jaguar would essentially make us homeless.” The Magnussons have now resorted to crowdfunding to raise the needed funds, hoping for the engagement of the replica community to support them through the appeal process.
Unless the ruling is overturned in the Court of Appeal, it will not only open the door for Jaguar Land Rover to continue to sue and crush small replica builders and passionate Jaguar enthusiasts but sets a precedent for all other car manufacturers, threatening replica builders and owners on a global scale.
Enthusiasts worldwide are encouraged to share this on social media and to donate any amount, however small. At the Go-Fund Me page https://gofund.me/f6916372
For more information and direct quotes, please contact Elizabeth Magnusson, daughter of Karl and Ann-Christine Magnusson and Official Spokesperson.
Phone: +46 734-136047
The Swedish court files are public and can be requested from the Swedish courts at https://www.domstol.se/ and are also available in original and auto-translated versions using the following links:
- Court ruling
- Auto-translated to English: http://bit.ly/38UwvJj
- Appeal, auto-translated to English: http://bit.ly/2LhwaYY
- Supplement to the appeal, auto-translated to English: http://bit.ly/3abYy81
- Annexes: http://bit.ly/3iQxbUF