A handful of companies in the automotive industry, including BMW, Honda and Toyota, are being investigated by the US International Trade Commission for allegedly violating a patent.
A complaint filed Intellectual Ventures II to the USITC claims that the automakers, as well as Aisin and Denso, have used thermoplastic components that violate its patent. It is asserted that these components are used in a large number of vehicle parts including water pumps and power steering units.
The USITC has yet to determine if the case will be investigated further but says a decision will be made when a judge is appointed to the case and an evidentiary hearing is held. The USITC expects to conclude its investigation within 45 days and if the companies are found to have violated the patent, a limited exclusion order and cease and desist orders which have been requested by Intellectual Ventures II may be enforced.