Jaguar Land Rover are suing Bentley in the US over an alleged patent infringement on the Bentley Bentayga’s ‘All Terrain Specification’ drive modes.
Land Rover has justifiably been able to claim for a very long time that it offers the ultimate luxury SUV in the Range Rover, and with 70 years of experience with four-wheel drive systems its cars are more capable than owners will probably ever discover.
But we’re entering a new world of competition for the Range Rover, especially with the arrival of the Bentley Bentayga in 2016, giving lovers of luxury SUVs choices in their quest to ride high in style across desert dunes.
The new Bentayga is obvious competition for the Range Rover (the new Rolls-Royce Cullinan SUV probably less so – it’s niche all to itself), with the Bentayga diesel costing £136k and the Bentayga W12 £163k, actually cheaper than the £177k LWB SVAutobiography Range Rover.
Now, Land Rover is fighting back against the usurper with a lawsuit in the US taking Bentley on for infringing its patents in relation to its Terrain Response technology.
JLR claim that Bentley’s All Terrain Specification (an option) includes a Drive Dynamics system which offers Snow, Ice & Wet Grass, Dirt & Gravel, Mud & Trail and Sand modes, just like the Range Rover’s Grass/Gravel/Snow, Mud and Ruts, Sand, and Rocks modes.
JLR has filed a 30-page complaint against Bentley, seeking damages, costs and an injunction against Bentley after spending two years trying to get them to address their complaints without success.
It seems highly unlikely JLR are trying to break Bentley’s bank (little chance) with this action, but it’s not going to do Land Rover’s reputation any harm if they win and can claim Bentley could only deliver the Bentayga by stealing Land Rover’s technology.