At least it will if Avanti Motor Corp. realizes its plans to assemble a full-sized SUV called the Studebaker XUV.
Avanti says it will start assembling the vehicle late this year at its plant in Villa Rica, Ga. Eventually it wants to build about 1,000 a year.
Trying to block Avanti is the world's largest automaker, General Motors. GM filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Detroit, alleging that the Studebaker XUV resembles its Hummer H2.
GM wants a preliminary injunction that would prevent Avanti from manufacturing, advertising and selling the Studebaker XUV, which Avanti promoted at the Chicago Auto Show last week. A court hearing is scheduled for Feb. 26.
"It is clear that Avanti Motor Corp. is attempting to profit from and capitalize upon the enormous popularity and goodwill that GM has developed in the wildly successful H2 by knocking off the H2," Charles Ellerbrock, a trademark lawyer for GM, says in a statement.
Meanwhile, Avanti says it will continue with production plans.
"Car buyers will certainly not be confused," says CEO Michael Kelly. "Put both vehicles side by side, and the distinct differences are apparent."
The company plans to use a Ford F-250 chassis for the SUV and offer buyers a choice of two Ford engines, a 6.0-liter V-8 diesel or a 6.8-liter V-10 gasoline motor. Stickers for the SUV will start at $75,000.
The Avanti originally was a nameplate of the Studebaker Corp., which stopped auto production in 1967. Avanti Motor Corp. was established to continue production of the Avanti sports car and other models.
Kelly acquired Avanti Motor in 1999 and moved it to Villa Rica. The company assembles about 150 Avantis a year. Its Web site says it has six dealers in the United States.
Kelly is a native of South Bend, Ind., where Studebaker was based before its demise.
"I grew up with Studebaker," he says. "I grew up with Avanti."
Reuters contributed to this report