Plug-in cars poised for lawsuits?

by Saleem Khan, CBC News Online

According to Wired's Autopia blog, a University of California professor thinks automakers are on the cusp of being hit with a rash of lawsuits for infringing on patents related to hybrid vehicles.

Wired's John Gartner writes that he was talking to Andy Frank of the University of California Davis campus who told Gartner he and the school hold nine patents and have applied for five more related to plug-in vehicles.

According to Gartner, Frank plans to sell his patents and expects the buyer will sue the automakers for royalties on hybrid cars that can recharge their batteries by using a conventional electrical outlet.

Doesn't anyone make money by actually making something anymore?