TI Group Automotive Systems v. VDO (Fed. Cir. June 30, 2004) [PDF].
TI Group is an automotive supplier that makes fuel tanks, fuel pump assemblies, and complete fuel tank systems. (U.S. Patent 4,860,714). TI Group has sold over thirty million fuel pump assemblies that embody the ’714 patent. VDO began selling an assembly that “were essentially drop-in replacements.”
After a jury verdict of willful infringement, the district court granted a JMOL in VDO’s favor based on non-infringement but denied VDO’s JMOL motion for invalidity.
Because we affirm some of the district court’s claim constructions, and because as to those limitations TI Group points to no evidence supporting the jury’s finding of infringement, we affirm the district court’s grant of VDO’s JMOL motion with respect to infringement. However, because we have broadened a number of the district court’s claim constructions, thus affecting the invalidity analysis, we vacate the district court’s denial of VDO’s JMOL motion with respect to invalidity and remand that issue for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.