Apparently, a company is suing Toyota for infringing on their patents with their hybrid Prius and Highlander models. Solomon Technologies, Inc. claims that Toyota hybrids are using technology that is patented under patent #5,067,932, which seems to involve how the drive-train and braking system functions.
The implications here are huge. If Solomon Technologies wins, they could stop Toyota from legally importing hybrids into the US. And what about other hybrids, like my beloved Honda Civic? No word yet as to whether this patent is being infringed upon by other hybrid manufacturers, but it does make me a bit nervous!