Is Tesla really such a big threat?

To the Editor: 

Regarding "Automakers oppose Pennsylvania's bill allowing Tesla stores" (autonews.com, June 10): 

When I was a new-car dealer in Pennsylvania, it always seemed to me that the dealer laws were in place to protect the underdog, an individual against a dealer or a dealer against a manufacturer -- but never to interfere in a disagreement among equals. 

I guess reasonable people might ponder whether Tesla could become bigger than Toyota with the unfair advantage of no franchisees, but I doubt it. I really don't foresee that the public will be harmed. Rather, I think people will see, as they have so often in the past, that the franchised dealer is a key to convenient and caring service statewide. 

Furthermore, given the $100K price tag of the Tesla (OK -- less for the stripped-down models), is there much real competition to mainstream volume brands? 

Is the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers hoping resistance to the Tesla exemption will win the manufacturers some new rights or edge Tesla out? Or do the manufacturers really think the exemption is that great an advantage? 


Vice President 

Express Truck Rental 

Warminster, Pa.