It's coming to Canada as a car, and to the US as...something else.
Last month, we spotted an interesting trademark filing from Ford for the name "Skyline." The filing sparked interest because the "Skyline" nameplate is typically associated with the Nissan GT-R. Prior to the existing R35 generation, the GT-R was a performance variant of the Skyline, a relatively common coupe/sedan model in Japan. It's not often that an automaker files a trademark for a name previously used by a competitor, so the news was puzzling to say the least.
We recently spotted another trademark filing that could add some clarity to the Skyline situation, or make it even more confusing. Nissan filed a trademark registration for the "Skyline" name with the USPTO on August 26, 2021. But wait, how's that possible if Ford already nabbed the trademark? Well, it's worth looking at the filing category.
Whereas Ford's application was "intended to cover the categories of motor land vehicles, namely, SUVs, trucks, and automobiles," Nissan filed its application "to cover the categories of model cars; minicars" with the primary class designated as games, toys, and sporting goods. Along with the application, Nissan submitted four pictures, showing small die-cast versions of the R34 GT-R and and 25GT-X sedan. It looks like Nissan wants to make sure it keeps the name for future toys, since it already lost the name to Ford for actual vehicles.
Nissan may not own the trademark in the US, but Canada is a different story. The Japanese automaker filed an application for the Skyline name with the CIPO on August 25, 2021, this time under the category of goods and services. Specifically, the trademark covers "automobiles, electric cars, wagons, trucks; vans [vehicles], and sport utility vehicles."
There's still a lot we don't know here; what will Ford do with the Skyline name, and what is Nissan planning in the toy industry? Perhaps we will get answers in the near future. Nissan still builds the Skyline (a rebadged Infiniti Q50) in Japan, but the model faces an uncertain future as sedan sales slow down and crossovers become more popular. The Skyline was never officially sold in the United States, but stories of its greatness have pushed prices up to insane levels. Even with little mainstream recognition in the US, it will be odd to see a Ford vehicles badged as a Skyline.