A fresh report out of the United States says Mercedes-Benz has filed with the European Union Intellectual Property Office to trademark various versions of a new “O-Class” badge.

According to AutoGuide.com, the Stuttgart-based firm filed the applications under the classification reserved for “motor vehicles and motor vehicle engines” on 4 February.

The specific badges listed in the submission were “O 120”, “O 140”, “O 180” and “O 200”. While it’s not yet clear what the Daimler-backed brand has in store for these monikers, it’s worth noting (as AutoGuide.com points out) Mercedes has in the past used the “O” prefix for city buses.

Still, we can’t help but wonder whether the nameplate has been set aside for a new baby Benz rumoured to slot in below the A-Class. In October 2018, a report suggested Daimler was considering phasing out its Smart brand and filling the void with a new small Mercedes tentatively dubbed the U-Class.

Indeed, the specific O-Class monikers listed in the application would line up neatly with Mercedes-Benz’s current naming convention, with the numerals denoting levels of output (the O 120 name, for instance, could conceivably be applied to a small-engined, base model in a city car range) and suggesting a vehicle smaller than the A-Class.

Of course, whether the O-Class badge will ever actually make it onto the rump of a production vehicle is another question altogether, since a trademark application is by no means a guarantee the nameplate will be used…