GM Applies for ‘Feel the Usedphoria’ Trademark to Sell Used Cars

In this moment, I am usedphoric. Not because my car is certified pre-owned. But because I am unindebted to financing.

General Motors isn’t exactly out here hitting home runs with its promotional campaigns. It took far too long to shelve Chevrolet’s “Real People” ads, and somehow didn’t figure out over the course of 21 years that dance trios don’t sell compact cars. Now, GM appears ready to commit to another mistake with a tagline meant to promote buying used: “Feel the Usedphoria.”

This slogan was the subject of an Oct. 25 trademark filing with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, which GM told the line was for use by “automobile dealerships in the field of pre-owned motor vehicles of all makes and models.” Clearly, it’s a play on “euphoria” meant to make people feel better about buying used. To people of a certain age, though, euphoric is a word irreversibly corrupted by internet goobers; one that evokes images of dudes in fedoras and Triforce tees.

GM trademark: “Feel the Usedphoria”, USPTO

As the World Intellectual Property Organization’s database only registers this tagline being trademark in the U.S., it’s unlikely this will turn into a Toyota Cavalier-tier embarrassment abroad. That it’ll be one domestically, though, isn’t a certainty. Automakers regularly apply for trademarks on things they have no intention to use, as was the case in 2019 when GM renewed its rights to the Chevy Cavalier name. “Feel the Usedphoria” could be more of the same, and if GM has learned anything from those “Real People” ads, it’ll leave this ad campaign where it belongs: In the trash can.

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