Avanti Motors has announced that plans to roll out the 2004 Studebaker Xtreme Utility Vehicle (XUV) will move forward, despite a recent lawsuit filed by GM. GM’s lawsuit contends that Avanti’s Studebaker XUV “knocks off” the shape of GM’s Hummer H2 and will confuse the public.

Avanti Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Michael E. Kelly said in a statement: “There will not be any confusion on the part of the car-buying public,” said Kelly. “Put both vehicles side by side, and there’s no question that the Studebaker XUV is distinctly different.”

Kelly stated that Avanti Motors never considered using GM, Hummer or H2 designs for their Studebaker XUV. It was also noted that no GM parts were used to build the new Studebaker XUV. “There are no parts of an H2 Hummer that fit on a Studebaker XUV,” Kelly said.

“Furthermore, the Studebaker is based on original concepts and designs developed by Avanti Motor Corp. The Studebaker XUV has a completely different body style, from the front end to the rear gate, and it has sliding rear side doors and a sliding rear roof, the same as a 1963 Studebaker Wagonaire.”

Avanti says that the Studebaker is more than two feet longer than the H2, and features a rounded hood, distinct front grille, and unique body moulding. The company adds that it also includes several features not found in the GM offering, including power- sliding rear doors and a power-retractable rear roof.

Avanti describes GM’s lawsuit as ‘frivolous’ and says that it was presented to the small manufacturer by General Motors in order for GM to create a monopoly on the market of boxy, utility-type vehicles, thus preventing Studebaker, Ford, or even Chrysler from producing this type of vehicle in the future.

Also see:

USA: GM to sue Avanti over Studebaker ‘extreme’ utility vehicle