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Nintendo Wins Lawsuit Against Go-Karting Company MariCar

After a long battle since 2017, big video game company Nintendo has won a lawsuit against Japanese street go-karting company MariCar for using Super Mario costumes and their name. We’re guessing it’s the Mario Kart brand that Nintendo owns (via SoraNews24).

MariCar paid 50 million yen in damages (US$476,000) after the court has rejected MariCar’s appeal from a 2018 injunction that favoured Nintendo. Furthermore, Nintendo are seeking invalidation trials over MariCar’s name infringing on Mario Kart.

Before the 2017 lawsuit, folks who wanted to get their go-karting jollies using Mario characters can do so with MariCar’s service; they dress up as a Super Mario character (similar ones, anyway) and then drive around the go-kart race track. Because MariCar’s fun ride is known to have several accidents, that means bad PR for Nintendo since Super Mario costumes are pretty popular on this service. Hence, lawsuit.

At this time of writing, MariCar has rebranded themselves as Street Kart. The site now comes with the disclaimer:

Street Kart is in no way a reflection of Nintendo, the game ‘Mario Kart’.(We do not provide rental of costumes of Mario Series.)” 

While MariCar is in the wrong for not asking for permission a long while back, this also cements Nintendo as being a company that’s still overprotective over its IP. Remember Super Smash Bros. and Mario game emulations? Yeah, they’re pretty touchy about those subjects too.

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