Automobile - Legal to put Different Company Emblem on My Trunk than the Car's real make

I want to put a Mercedes trunk emblem on a Toyota trunk. Is that legal (USA - I guess it would be state law, but if it’s illegal in *any *state, I’d like to know)?

I wouldn’t think it would be, but I could also see lots of inaccurate descriptions.

I don’t know how to google it and get a reliable source.

… why wouldn’t it be legal?

Well, if you tried to sell it as a Mercedes…

I don’t know - tinted windows are illegal some places. I could see police wanting it to be illegal for car id purposes.

I don’t know if it’s illegal, but I once saw a GMC pickup with a Maserati emblem on the tailgate.

I got a good solid belly laugh out of that.

Many years ago, working in a gas station, I saw a brand new 1960 Ford with the hood letters rearranged to spell DORF.

Sure had me fooled for a while. Was the first 1960 Ford I had ever seen. Kept thinking to myself…“what the hell is a DORF??”

So what about those faux Bentleys? The Chrysler 300 with a decal kit…making it a “FrankenBentley”?

A guy around here used to drive a 3 cylinder Geo Metro or Sprint or something like that with a VW badge on the hood. Added a bit of class.

I’ve heard that some people will put a Mercedes logo on a Smart Fortwo, but then a Smart is a Mercedes in a way, sort of like how Scions and Lexuses are Toyotas. I think some car companies use different logos in different countries - at least historically, Toyota cars sold in their home country were always Toyotas but when they were exported they would sometimes get a new brand name like Lexus or Scion pursuant to whatever marketing strategy they had for that market.

Perfectly legal, just like putting Benz hubcaps on a Yugo. As long as the VIN matches the registration, title, and insurance, and no safety regulations are broken, do what you like.

I think.

Window tint is a safety/visibility issue. On my last car I had the side and back glass tinted (nothing too drastic) and I noted that driving to work in the winter (still dark in the morning) it made it very difficult to see if pedestrians might be in the crosswalk while I was making a turn. I decided not to have tint applied to the car which replaced it.

As for police identifying a vehicle, the VIN defines what the car is.

There have even been companies that make high end replica hood ornaments and even Rolls Royce grills.

The issue isn’t the end user so much. The issue is the maker of such replicas. Do they have permission? Are they paying appropriate fees to the trademark/copyright owners? Etc.

If you have a fake RR grill that wasn’t legally made, RR might want you to remove it and destroy it.

Back when the Mustang and Capri shared all but a few trim pieces, there was a fad of putting Capri taillights (with the fine horizontal bars instead of the Mustang’s 3 blocks) on Mustangs, and vice versa. There was even one that was a Capri from the rear view and a Mustang from the front, badges and all.

I have considered putting Ferrari badges (I have a complete set from a 308) on my Cobra, which is hilarious/blasphemous if you know those marque’s history…

My mom always wanted me to make her a VW-Rolls. I suppose she liked the whimsical aspect of a “fancy” bug.

I gave her a 3.0 Saloonand a London taxi that she wanted, but never the bug.

One of my many regrets in life…

It’s perfectly legal. If they pull you over they’ll get everything they need off the registration.

That said, you’ll like like a total idiot, but being an idiot has never been a crime.


When we had a Toyota Tercel, I snagged a nameplate from one of the 4 wheel drive models and bolted it on the grill so I could go thru chain-control areas without putting chains on.

I’ve got an “ix” on my 325 for the same reason. It also has custom-made Grateful Dead* “Steal Your Face”* emblems in place of the round “BMW” emblem. I also stuck an “M” from a M5 on the grill, which was good for about 60 extra horsepower. :wink:

Maybe someday I’ll “turbocharge” it. :smiley:

If it’s your vehicle and you bought the emblem (stuff the receipt in your glove compartment) AND you don’t try to sell it as a Mercedes, it should be legal.

Save your money and just put a Type-R sticker on it.

Hoons. God.

And a deadhead sticker on a Cadillac used to be considered so shocking.