Piper Aircraft is suing eVTOL aircraft startup Archer Aviation for alleged infringement of the trademark covering its Archer family of piston singles. In a case filed in the U.S. District Court in Delaware, where California-based Archer was incorporated, Piper alleges that the use of the name for the four-seat, fixed-wing eVTOL infringes its federally-registered trademark and also its legal rights in the state of Florida, where the longstanding general aviation manufacturer is headquartered.
Archer Aviation founder Brett Adcock told AIN he had no comment to make on the lawsuit. Along with co-founder Adam Goldstein, he announced the formation of the new eVTOL venture in May 2020.
The former Piper Aircraft Corp. first introduced the Archer model in 1976 and its lawsuit maintains it has used the trademark continuously since then. It said the trademark was acquired by the new owners of the company after it emerged from bankruptcy protection in 1995.
In 2019, Piper sold 189 Archer aircraft and expects to log around 147 more sales this year, and recently made the 5,000th delivery of the four-seater model. Current versions of the aircraft include the Archer LX, which features a 180-hp Lycoming engine and Garmin G1000NXi avionics, and the diesel-powered DLX.
Archer Aviation has not yet announced the name of its planned all-electric eVTOL model.