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December 5, 2008

What Motivated Steven Tyler into a Motorcycle Brand Naming Switch?

steventyler.gifAerosmith's frontman, Steven Tyler, recently learned some tough naming and branding lessons as his fledgling motorcycle company, Red Wing, was forced to change its name due to trademark issues.

The new name, Dirico Motorcycles, was named after Tyler's brother-in-law Marc Dirico, the designer of these ultra cool road bikes and one of the company owners.

Tyler produces the artistic input on each bike, it seems, and Dirico and Stephen Talarico of AC Custom Motorcycles do the rest.

diricomotorcycle.gifThese Dirico Motorcycles are technically custom Harleys, but each motorcycle is signed by Tyler himself. Those who are interested in these autographed bikes will have only two varieties to choose from, the ProStreet and the Retro.

I do have to wonder where the trademark problems arose. Honda is one likely candidate, since it would most certainly fight to avoid undue competition for its Gold Wing. There is also the Red Wing hockey team as well as the Red Wing Shoes company, who has a line of motorcycle boots.

Any guesses?

Well, Dirico Motorcycle's blog confirms that Honda was the one who complained. The similarity between the Gold Wing Brand name and the Red Wing logo was not okay by anyone at Honda.

These look like great bikes, but this goes to show that even rock stars have to abide by smart brand naming and trademarking practices.

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Posted by William Lozito at December 5, 2008 7:59 AM
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