We are automotive law experts. Our lawyers know what issues you face and what sort of advice you need. Our experience means that we can help you identify solutions to challenges facing the sector, from supply chain issues to rising costs. You need robust, cost-effective advice that’s helpful and pragmatic for your business, and we’re uniquely placed to provide that. 

We’re on hand to make your ambitions in the automotive industry a reality. With extensive experience with some of the world’s leading brands, we can support large-scale, business-critical projects through to multi-jurisdictional commercial, data protection and privacy issues. 

We’ll navigate you through what you need to know, from expanding commercial opportunities to enhancing your current strategy. We advise on the commercial implications at each stage of product life cycle. Our longstanding and valued relationships with international original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and Tier 1 suppliers enable us to manage negotiations efficiently and to identify the issues that really matter to you. 

Our clients 

We act for a stellar list of major OEMs, including Lotus, Triumph Motorcycles and LEVC. Our experience reaches throughout the industry, from autonomous technology (including hydrogen), EV charging, distribution networks, and advising top tier suppliers such as Goodyear Dunlop and Euro Car Parts.

What we do

Our tier-one ranked commercial practice understands what your in-house legal team requires. We negotiate and draft complex agreements. Our extensive experience advising on automotive contracts across different jurisdictions includes direct supply and purchase agreements, indirect purchasing for software, goods and services; and dealer, distributor and repairer agreements, often involving worldwide distributor and dealer networks. 

Commercial

We advise automotive clients on all aspects of competition law. 

We provide user-friendly and practical advice to clients in the automotive sector, including on dealer and repairer models and strategies, bonus programmes and warranty conditions.

We implement compliance programmes to manage ongoing risk and advise clients handling investigations by the UK and EU competition authorities (including leniency/immunity applications and appeals to the Competition Appeal Tribunal). We also advise on applying multi-jurisdiction merger control rules to corporate acquisitions and dawn raid procedures.

Competition law 

Our top 20 corporate team is one of the largest in the UK with a global reach supported by Pangea Net, our network of international law firms. We advise national and international corporate clients in the automotive industry – from large corporate manufacturers to supply chain corporates. 

Our lawyers are known for their extensive experience in domestic and international M&A transactions, private equity work, corporate governance advice, reorganisations, and changes to capital structure. We advise on emerging automotive tech, Greentech, and energy, in addition to business-critical transactions that future proof your business and will withstand the scrutiny of any subsequent audit or sale. Our dedicated company secretarial team can also take care of your day-to-day company secretarial needs. 

Corporate

Specialist knowledge and advice is crucial to ensure you comply with data protection legislation. From data involved in managing customers, employees and distributors, to privacy issues with products, apps, advertising, and marketing, we help you meet your legal obligations and minimise your exposure to financial penalties. 
 
We advise on the risks associated with proposed data-sharing relationships with third parties and how to mitigate these risks through robust diligence and written contracts. We can also help you implement an efficient subject access request response, avoiding any drain on resources.

Data protection 

 We provide results-driven support with a proven track record of resolving disputes robustly and speedily. Specialising in managing commercial contract and trading disputes for major domestic and international corporations, we advise on litigation, arbitration, mediation and expert determination. 
 
We’ve helped OEMs, Tier 1 suppliers, and other automotive clients resolve disputes with suppliers, dealers, distributors, repairers and other commercial partners, particularly those involving marketing, production lines, and consumers. We provide training on the cost-effective management of disputes and specific issues, including privilege and contract formation. 

Dispute resolution

We deal with all aspects of employment and immigration law for automotive clients. Our cases have involved removing senior executives, sensitive disciplinary matters, issues relating to agency workers and immigration advice. 
 
Our lawyers and HR consultants will provide you with pragmatic solutions and industry-driven solutions. From ad hoc queries to complex discrimination and whistleblowing complaints, we act as an extension of your team. We advise clients at all levels of proceedings, right up to the European Court of Justice. Read more about our employment expertise. 

Employment 

 Our award-winning IP practice helps to protect, enforce and commercialise automotive clients’ trade marks and manage their IP portfolios. We’ve acted on many of the UK’s leading cases, shaping automotive trade mark law in the UK and Europe. We achieve savings and efficiencies and have an excellent track record in high-stakes disputes. 
 
We draft and negotiate the full range of IP-focused commercial agreements. Everything from R&D agreements for projects developing new models of electric cars and batteries to advertising campaigns. We advise on influencer, advertising and licensing agreements; innovative capture and patent advice; IP audits; litigation; and counterfeit protection. Read more about our IP practice. 

Intellectual property

We provide tailored guidance on government regulations facing the automotive industry. We advise on issues including health and safety, environmental, product compliance and safety, and fire safety relevant to automotive businesses – including REACH and WEEE regulations.  

Our automotive lawyers deliver training on a range of risks including how to manage a dawn raid, what to do if an inspector visits any of your sites unannounced, contracts that protect the business from a regulatory perspective, how to investigate an incident or near miss, and bribery and corruption. 
 
We support businesses in a crisis, providing an immediate on-site response in the event of an accident or incident. We enable businesses to continue as usual, with limited impact on production demands. Our lawyers can advise on or undertake a thorough and privileged internal incident investigation to put the business in the best possible position to deal with an inevitable regulatory investigation. We guide automotive clients through fatal accident inquiries and Health and Safety Executive investigations.

Regulatory

Public sector expertise means we provide market-leading state aid advice in relation to major projects and investments. We advise on state aid funding for major engineering and manufacturing companies, including OEMs and publicly funded research projects and joint ventures. Our experience advising both industry and funders means we are well placed, not just as lawyers but as business advisers, to help you maximise your prospects in funding applications.

Subsidy control

Our in house lawyers service can help you overcome the challenges you face when determining how best to resource significant volumes of legal work. Our tailored retainer arrangement delivers fixed price certainty and a dedicated team that knows you and your business, while providing flexibility.

We provide online training and resources to keep you updated, including bespoke training on areas that have a direct impact on your business. We provide legal updates and bulletins to keep you abreast of changes to the law that affect the automotive industry. Our helpline can also help you avoid problems further down the line by answering ad hoc queries as they arise. We deliver our wide-ranging seminars and webinars as an ongoing programme of events. We rely on your feedback to continually ensure we’re providing the best service.

Value added services

Our tier-one ranked commercial practice understands what your in-house legal team requires. We negotiate and draft complex agreements. Our extensive experience advising on automotive contracts across different jurisdictions includes direct supply and purchase agreements, indirect purchasing for software, goods and services; and dealer, distributor and repairer agreements, often involving worldwide distributor and dealer networks. 

Commercial

We advise automotive clients on all aspects of competition law. 

We provide user-friendly and practical advice to clients in the automotive sector, including on dealer and repairer models and strategies, bonus programmes and warranty conditions.

We implement compliance programmes to manage ongoing risk and advise clients handling investigations by the UK and EU competition authorities (including leniency/immunity applications and appeals to the Competition Appeal Tribunal). We also advise on applying multi-jurisdiction merger control rules to corporate acquisitions and dawn raid procedures.

Competition law 

Our top 20 corporate team is one of the largest in the UK with a global reach supported by Pangea Net, our network of international law firms. We advise national and international corporate clients in the automotive industry – from large corporate manufacturers to supply chain corporates. 

Our lawyers are known for their extensive experience in domestic and international M&A transactions, private equity work, corporate governance advice, reorganisations, and changes to capital structure. We advise on emerging automotive tech, Greentech, and energy, in addition to business-critical transactions that future proof your business and will withstand the scrutiny of any subsequent audit or sale. Our dedicated company secretarial team can also take care of your day-to-day company secretarial needs. 

Corporate

Specialist knowledge and advice is crucial to ensure you comply with data protection legislation. From data involved in managing customers, employees and distributors, to privacy issues with products, apps, advertising, and marketing, we help you meet your legal obligations and minimise your exposure to financial penalties. 
 
We advise on the risks associated with proposed data-sharing relationships with third parties and how to mitigate these risks through robust diligence and written contracts. We can also help you implement an efficient subject access request response, avoiding any drain on resources.

Data protection 

 We provide results-driven support with a proven track record of resolving disputes robustly and speedily. Specialising in managing commercial contract and trading disputes for major domestic and international corporations, we advise on litigation, arbitration, mediation and expert determination. 
 
We’ve helped OEMs, Tier 1 suppliers, and other automotive clients resolve disputes with suppliers, dealers, distributors, repairers and other commercial partners, particularly those involving marketing, production lines, and consumers. We provide training on the cost-effective management of disputes and specific issues, including privilege and contract formation. 

Dispute resolution

We deal with all aspects of employment and immigration law for automotive clients. Our cases have involved removing senior executives, sensitive disciplinary matters, issues relating to agency workers and immigration advice. 
 
Our lawyers and HR consultants will provide you with pragmatic solutions and industry-driven solutions. From ad hoc queries to complex discrimination and whistleblowing complaints, we act as an extension of your team. We advise clients at all levels of proceedings, right up to the European Court of Justice. Read more about our employment expertise. 

Employment 

 Our award-winning IP practice helps to protect, enforce and commercialise automotive clients’ trade marks and manage their IP portfolios. We’ve acted on many of the UK’s leading cases, shaping automotive trade mark law in the UK and Europe. We achieve savings and efficiencies and have an excellent track record in high-stakes disputes. 
 
We draft and negotiate the full range of IP-focused commercial agreements. Everything from R&D agreements for projects developing new models of electric cars and batteries to advertising campaigns. We advise on influencer, advertising and licensing agreements; innovative capture and patent advice; IP audits; litigation; and counterfeit protection. Read more about our IP practice. 

Intellectual property

We provide tailored guidance on government regulations facing the automotive industry. We advise on issues including health and safety, environmental, product compliance and safety, and fire safety relevant to automotive businesses – including REACH and WEEE regulations.  

Our automotive lawyers deliver training on a range of risks including how to manage a dawn raid, what to do if an inspector visits any of your sites unannounced, contracts that protect the business from a regulatory perspective, how to investigate an incident or near miss, and bribery and corruption. 
 
We support businesses in a crisis, providing an immediate on-site response in the event of an accident or incident. We enable businesses to continue as usual, with limited impact on production demands. Our lawyers can advise on or undertake a thorough and privileged internal incident investigation to put the business in the best possible position to deal with an inevitable regulatory investigation. We guide automotive clients through fatal accident inquiries and Health and Safety Executive investigations.

Regulatory

Public sector expertise means we provide market-leading state aid advice in relation to major projects and investments. We advise on state aid funding for major engineering and manufacturing companies, including OEMs and publicly funded research projects and joint ventures. Our experience advising both industry and funders means we are well placed, not just as lawyers but as business advisers, to help you maximise your prospects in funding applications.

Subsidy control

Our in house lawyers service can help you overcome the challenges you face when determining how best to resource significant volumes of legal work. Our tailored retainer arrangement delivers fixed price certainty and a dedicated team that knows you and your business, while providing flexibility.

We provide online training and resources to keep you updated, including bespoke training on areas that have a direct impact on your business. We provide legal updates and bulletins to keep you abreast of changes to the law that affect the automotive industry. Our helpline can also help you avoid problems further down the line by answering ad hoc queries as they arise. We deliver our wide-ranging seminars and webinars as an ongoing programme of events. We rely on your feedback to continually ensure we’re providing the best service.

Value added services

Featured experience

An electric car subscription service

We advised on processing telematics data and dashcam footage; the steps that it needed to take to ensure it was able to comply with the GDPR in respect of the introduction of new processing activities; determining the legal basis for processing, drafting appropriate notices for drivers; and the retention and sharing of all of the above data. 

British Automotive company

Our lawyers act as an extension of their in-house team. We work on a vast range of issues, including parts supply for a new hypercar; its IP portfolio management; research, development, and licensing agreements; software supply; and other direct and indirect purchasing elements.

Our sector expertise has helped the client achieve ambitious growth, and we’ve had great feedback. We’ve:

  • Advised on IR35 issues with contractors and employment terms of agreements to minimise risk and issues relating to COVID-Secure workplace planning.
  • Managed several data protection matters relating to GDPR compliance, including the use of intranet cookies, international data transfers, and appointment of third-party processors.
  • Advised on personal data processing and pseudonymisation techniques as part of those projects.
  • Preparation for Brexit in respect of data protection and the General Block Exemption Regulation.
  • Acted on dispute concerning the removal of assets from its site and energy storage. The matter involved working with the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy to reach a resolution with the other commercial party.

Commercial electric vehicle manufacturer

We’ve worked together for several years, notably on a case that is now one of the UK’s leading decisions on shape marks. We also advised on its collaboration with industry and academic partners to develop zero-emissions hybrid powertrain technology. This meant reviewing the proposed collaboration agreement, advising on various issues, including the contribution and use of background IP and the ownership and exploitation of resulting IP. On day-to-day HR matters, we provide training and deal with Employment Tribunal cases. We’ve implemented a brand protection programme and successfully assisted with an Advertising Standards Authority complaint. We also brought a damages claim against the party responsible for designing the steering envelope for an iconic introduced in 2017. The case related to various design defects in the suspension and steering system for the vehicle and involved consideration of complex CAD data to pinpoint the cause of the defect.

Large UK car manufacturer

We were involved in an inquest following the suicide of a longstanding employee. The employee had been informed that he was being investigated for health and safety failings. We provided a robust defence of our client and how it handled the welfare of an employee in connection with the HR investigation. We represented the client’s interests at the two-day inquest, avoiding any public criticism of the client in its management of employee welfare issues.

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