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Another shameless Chinese knockoff: Land Rover is the latest victim

It seems that Jaguar Land Rover is in a tizzy (actually reports say they are "furious") over the release of a new Chinese crossover called the LandWind, which looks oddly identical to the Range Rover Evoque crossover. Could it be that China has copied the exact design of the Range Rover Evoque? How could it be?

2012 Land Rover

Of course, we know how it happens. Jaguar recently constructed a $1.8-billion factory in China to build enough Range Rover Evoque's to satisfy the eager and very large Chinese desire for the latest and greatest in automobiles. And as we have learned over the past 20+ years, when you give them blueprints and teach them how to build it, they will most certainly use that know-how and technology to their own advantage.

The Associated Press reported that at a press conference at the 2015 Shanghai Auto Show, where the LandWind (they were even very creative in trying to change the name!) was debuted, Jaguar Land Rover CEO Ralph Speth expressed his dismay at the "copy-paste" methods of the Chinese. Gee, Ralph, is this the first time you've heard about Chinese knockoffs?

This isn't exactly breaking news. Speth was even lamenting the fact that "there are no laws to protect us, so we have to take it as it is." Surely, you knew that before deciding to take your blueprints and technology to China? Where have you been for the past 20 years?

I remember when the big rush to China was taking place and many U.S. companies couldn't wait to get there. They had visions of 20-billion Chinese consumers rushing to buy their appliances, cell phones, computers, hair dryers and curling irons, a myriad other products. These splendid visions soon turned to nightmares as story after story came out about how the Chinese took the designs and the technology, and were soon making the "cheaper" Chinese version of everything a consumer could want.

"You can't be protected in China," Speth bemoaned to the various reporters.

Of course not, Ralph! You, like so many others, are learning the hard way. You go, you see, and instead of being the conqueror, you become the conquered. The lesson: If you want to keep your intellectual property, you don't take it to China.

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