Originally Posted by clarkstoncracker
Using that information, you can't patent a bumper, or a crusher corner, or a hood, or a light, or a windshield, etc....
There has to be something that measures how "different" a new item is, and it has to be able to get a patent.
The question on the above would be are there more than one patents on each of the items you listed? It's a lot easier to get a patent on the first one out of the box. That's why I listed all the things that I would consider prior art. Yes, you are right, getting a new patent on a bumper would have to show that no one had done anything similar that you would have gotten the idea from.
Regarding the measure of how different something is; that's where a good attorney comes in. On a recent patent appliction we were turned down because we had a conflict with some prior art. Our attorneys talked to the patent agent, figured out where the grey area was at and boom, we had our patent.
(if you ever answer my final shipping questions you will see said patented item