Tesla's Retail Challenge

Calif. dealers call Tesla referral deal illegal

1:11 pm U.S. ET | Aug. 28, 2015
A new referral program from Tesla Motors that offers discounts to buyers referred by a Tesla owner is drawing complaints from dealers in the electric-car manufacturer’s home state of California.


Tesla's state-by-state battle with dealers

Automotive News is tracking the shifting battlegrounds in Tesla Motor's efforts to establish a manufacturer-owned retail model. This map will be regularly updated as news breaks. Read More

Texas isn't open for Tesla sales, governor says

3:56 pm U.S. ET | July 14, 2015
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said that Tesla Motors shouldn't expect to open Lone Star state sales outlets any time soon.

Tesla's Texas push runs out of juice

2:34 pm U.S. ET | May 29, 2015
Elon Musk has been shut out of the Lone Star state again. For the second time in two years, Tesla Motors is walking away in defeat from Texas after failing to convince lawmakers that it should be allowed to sell its $100,000 electric cars in the state.

Tesla awaits OK from governor to sell directly in Maryland

12:45 pm U.S. ET | April 15, 2015
Tesla will be granted up to four licenses in Maryland if the governor signs a bill supported by the Maryland Automobile Dealers Association.

Tesla blocked in W.Va. as governor signs bill

11:35 am U.S. ET | April 3, 2015
West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin today signed legislation that will effectively prevent Tesla Motors from selling cars in the strategically located state. West Virginia shares borders with five states and its easternmost county is considered a suburb of Washington, D.C.

Tesla advances in effort to expand in Ga., fails to gain entry to W.Va.

4:30 pm U.S. ET | March 26, 2015
A bill before Georgia's governor would let Tesla add to its stores there, while West Virginia has rejected a proposal that would have allowed Tesla to sell directly to consumers in the state.

Tesla free to sell cars in New Jersey as Christie signs bill

4:09 pm U.S. ET | March 18, 2015
Tesla Motors will be allowed to sell its electric cars straight to consumers in New Jersey, after Republican Governor Chris Christie signed a bill overhauling the state's dealership laws.

Tesla gets N.J. Senate panel's backing to sell directly to customers

5:08 pm U.S. ET | March 9, 2015
Tesla Motors drew closer to resuming electric-car sales in New Jersey as a state Senate committee approved a rule to allow direct customer purchases.

Tesla joined by Koch Brothers, Sierra Club in fight with dealers

3:47 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 17, 2015
Talk about strange bedfellows. The environmental group Sierra Club and Americans for Prosperity, the political action group funded by the Koch brothers, are both backing Tesla Motors in its battle to avoid franchised dealers and sell cars direct to consumers.

Missouri dealers file suit to block Tesla sales

1:20 pm U.S. ET | Jan. 23, 2015
Missouri auto dealers filed suit to block Tesla Motors' direct manufacturer-to-consumer sales in the state.

Musk dangles track, car plant in wooing Texas lawmakers

9:31 pm U.S. ET | Jan. 15, 2015
Tesla CEO Elon Musk urged Texas lawmakers to ease restrictions on sales of the company's electric luxury cars as he floated the prospect of locating a new car factory or a test facility for his "hyperloop" mass transit concept in the state.

Mich. blocks Tesla's sales model by plugging loophole

2:19 pm U.S. ET | Oct. 21, 2014
Michigan Governor Rick Snyder signed a bill today that effectively bars Tesla Motors' direct-sales model in the state.

Tesla courted suppliers in bid to stop bill banning direct sales in Mich.

6:22 pm U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Tesla Motors looked for support from its suppliers in Michigan in the company's unsuccessful bid to get Governor Rick Snyder to veto a bill that bans Tesla from selling its EVs directly to customers in the state.

Tesla's sales limits in Michigan tightened by one word of law

8:32 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
By the removal of a personal pronoun from state law, a bill awaiting Governor Rick Snyder's signature would make it harder for Tesla Motors to sell its electric vehicles directly to customers in Michigan.

Tesla blasts Michigan bill as 'raw deal'

2:31 pm U.S. ET | Oct. 17, 2014
Tesla says it's getting a “raw deal” in Michigan and is speaking out on a bill that would block its direct-sales model in the state -- and prevent it from operating a gallery. The bill cleared Michigan's legislative chambers October 2 and is awaiting the signature of Governor Rick Snyder.

Anti-Tesla bill reaches Michigan governor's desk

12:50 pm U.S. ET | Oct. 15, 2014
Legislation that would prevent Tesla Motors from directly selling its EV lineup in Michigan has cleared the state's legislative chambers and is awaiting the signature of Republican Governor Rick Snyder. The deadline to sign the bill is October 21.

Tesla's trump card? Used cars

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 6, 2014
Tesla is developing a program to sell the Model S secondhand in a bid to lower the cost of entry for the $71,070 sedan and unlock the earnings potential of Tesla's factory-owned retail network.

Iowa pulls the plug on Tesla test drives

4:10 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 26, 2014
Tesla Motors cut short a test-drive event in Iowa earlier this month after state regulators said the electric-vehicle maker was improperly acting as a dealer.

Tesla, dealers dispute impact of Mass. ruling

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 22, 2014
Tesla Motors Inc. says its win against dealers in Massachusetts' highest court last week bolsters its argument for selling directly.

Tesla argues New Jersey regulators can't stop direct sales

2:06 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 17, 2014
Tesla Motors, in a court filing submitted Tuesday, argued that New Jersey regulators have no authority to shut down direct sales at the electric-vehicle maker's stores in the state.

Tesla prevails in top Mass. court over direct sales

5:52 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 15, 2014
Massachusetts' highest court on Monday threw out a lawsuit seeking to block Tesla from selling its luxury electric cars directly to consumers in the state, enabling it to bypass traditional dealerships.

Tesla's $1.3 billion incentive deal with Nevada includes direct sales

6:30 am U.S. ET | Sept. 12, 2014
Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval signed tax breaks worth as much as $1.3 billion and a measure allowing Tesla Motors to sell directly to state residents, the final steps to bring the world's largest lithium-ion battery factory to Reno.

Tesla says it didn't violate Georgia regulations

9:24 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 2, 2014
Tesla Motors, facing a challenge from Georgia dealerships over how it sells cars, said claims made in a petition filed on behalf of auto retailers in the state that it breached its license agreement aren't valid.

Dealers in Georgia petition to shut Tesla down

5:53 pm U.S. ET | Aug. 29, 2014
Auto dealers in Georgia are the latest seeking to shut down Tesla's factory-owned stores. The Georgia Automobile Dealers Association filed a petition of enforcement Friday with state regulators arguing that Tesla's direct-sales model violates state law.

Tesla cleared to open up to 5 stores in Pa. under new law

3:15 pm U.S. ET | July 11, 2014
Pennsylvania governor Tom Corbett signed a bill that will allow Tesla to operate up to five stores in the state.

Tesla measure allowing 5 stores heads to Pa. governor's desk

4:20 pm U.S. ET | July 3, 2014
Tesla Motors, which has battled auto dealer groups over its direct sales of electric cars through company-owned stores, won another victory in Pennsylvania and a measure there allowing it to expand retail operations is headed for the governor's desk.

Five-store Tesla compromise reached in Pennsylvania

1:49 pm U.S. ET | June 26, 2014
The pro-Tesla legislation in Pennsylvania that helped spark a confrontation between dealers and other automakers earlier this month is now halfway to passage -- but with important new limits in place on the number of stores Tesla Motors would be allowed to own and operate in the state.


Musk makes auto industry rethink basic assumptions

12:01 am U.S. ET | June 23, 2014
Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk is exerting an inordinate influence over the auto industry in many ways. But his biggest waves come in the area of factory-dealer relations.

N.J. Assembly OKs bill to allow direct EV sales

12:01 am U.S. ET | June 23, 2014
The New Jersey General Assembly approved a bill last week to allow consumers to buy electric cars directly from a manufacturer. The bill now heads to the state Senate.

Tesla sets up shop in Dallas -- minus test-drives and sales

4:12 pm U.S. ET | June 19, 2014
You can touch, but you can’t drive, a Model S electric car in the latest Tesla Motors gallery in Dallas’ Northpark Mall. Tesla plans to open the doors to its 2,200-square-foot gallery Friday morning in the state with some of the most restrictive auto dealer franchise laws in the country.

N.J. Assembly OKs bill to allow Tesla direct sales

8:07 am U.S. ET | June 17, 2014
The New Jersey Assembly approved a bill to allow consumers to buy electric cars directly from a manufacturer. The bill now heads to the state Senate. Separately, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday signed previously approved legislation that would allow Tesla to continue selling at its five company-owned stores in that state.

State franchise laws, sparked by Tesla, go too far, other automakers charge

12:01 am U.S. ET | June 16, 2014
Dealers' opposition to Tesla Motors' model of factory-owned stores has led states to propose laws defending franchised dealers. Automakers charge that the legal balance in the dealer-automaker relationship now is shifting too far in favor of dealers.

NADA moves to counter franchise system critics

12:01 am U.S. ET | June 16, 2014
Franchised car dealers have taken plenty of heat for their resistance to Tesla Motors' state-by-state campaign to sell cars directly to consumers. Peter Welch, president of the National Automobile Dealers Association, is ready to push back.

Tesla gets reprieve in Missouri

12:01 am U.S. ET | May 19, 2014
Missouri state legislators scrapped a vote last week on a bill that would have prevented Tesla Motors Inc. from selling directly to consumers.

Tesla catches break as Missouri puts direct-sale ban on hold

4:11 pm U.S. ET | May 15, 2014
The fate of Tesla Motors' retail strategy in Missouri is on hold after state legislators scrapped a vote on a bill that would have prevented the company from selling directly to consumers.

Tesla faces new hurdle as Missouri weighs direct sales ban

4:34 pm U.S. ET | May 8, 2014
Tesla Motors says its fight to sell electric cars directly to consumers faces a new hurdle as Missouri's legislature is weighing a measure to bar its company-owned store system.


Tenacity serves Tesla CEO well

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 28, 2014
Don't forget how far Elon Musk has already brought Tesla into the automakers' world.

FTC officials: Ban on Tesla's direct sales 'bad policy'

11:36 am U.S. ET | April 24, 2014
In an unusual move, three top officials with the FTC on Thursday came out in opposition to laws that ban automakers like Tesla Motors from selling automobiles directly to consumers.

Pro-Tesla bill appears dead in Arizona Senate

10:33 am U.S. ET | April 15, 2014
A bill that would have allowed electric-vehicle maker Tesla Motors to sell cars at its factory-owned showrooms in Arizona appears to be dead in the state's Senate. But Tesla vowed today to continue "re-engaging" the Legislature next year on the matter.

Washington governor signs Tesla compromise bill

6:09 pm U.S. ET | April 8, 2014
Washington state officially approved Tesla's direct-sales model last Thursday, when Gov. Jay Inslee signed a bill allowing the electric-vehicle maker to continue selling its cars through its own, factory-owned showrooms instead of franchised dealerships in the state.


Is Tesla wasting time? Maybe not

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 7, 2014
Just because Automotive News' entire readership is scared is no reason to declare it a waste of time, energy and money.


Nothing ventured, nothing gained

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 7, 2014
The National Automobile Dealers Association is one large gorilla, and Crain certainly does not want to cross it.

Tesla appeals N.J. ruling on direct-sales ban

3:05 pm U.S. ET | April 2, 2014
Tesla filed an appeal Wednesday in New Jersey Superior Court to overturn last month's ruling that banned the electric-vehicle maker from selling its cars directly to consumers through factory-owned stores there.


N.J. weighs direct EV sales; states covet gigafactory

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 31, 2014
The Tesla vs. dealers clash was already intense. Now the fight has escalated, with the addition of presidential politics and bidding for a battery factory.


Tesla's wasting time, energy, money

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 31, 2014
If you care about customers, you have to be able to take care of them when they need help. For some reason, Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk has decided to wage war with the retail business to the detriment of his customers.

Tesla reaches deal to keep 5 N.Y. stores

5:58 pm U.S. ET | March 28, 2014
Tesla Motors and New York auto dealer lobbying groups reached an agreement that allows the electric-car maker to keep its five company-owned stores in the state, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Friday.

Texas dealers argue against altering franchise laws to lure Tesla plant

3:39 pm U.S. ET | March 28, 2014
Texas dealers defended the state's franchise laws today, just days after Gov. Rick Perry suggested that the laws should be reviewed and perhaps changed to let Tesla Motors sell its electric vehicles directly to consumers.

Ohio Senate panel approves bill allowing Tesla retail stores

6:16 pm U.S. ET | March 25, 2014
An Ohio Senate committee approved a bill barring automakers from selling directly to consumers except for three stores operated by Tesla Motors. The compromise was approved by Tesla and the Ohio Automobile Dealers Association, which had sought to block the automaker's sales model, said Senator Scott Oelslager, the committee chairman.

Tesla finds way to share the road with dealers in Washington state

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 23, 2014
On President's Day last month, about 40 electric-car advocates gathered under the rotunda at the state capitol in Washington state, where a lobbyist for Tesla Motors urged them to rally against a bill that would prevent the carmaker from opening new sales offices in the state.

Tesla direct sales bill moves forward in Arizona

4:13 pm U.S. ET | March 20, 2014
An Arizona Senate committee has pushed forward a bill that would let electric-vehicle maker Tesla Motors sell its cars directly to consumers.

Tesla may be forced to shut N.J. stores after state commission vote

12:22 pm U.S. ET | March 11, 2014
Tesla may have to shut down its factory-owned stores in New Jersey starting April 1 after the state's motor vehicle commission on Tuesday adopted new rules on dealership licensing.


Latest battles in states likely to yield mixed results for Tesla

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 3, 2014
A new round of state legislative battles between Tesla Motors Inc. and dealers looks like a draw so far.


Tesla's state-by-state battle with dealers

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 1, 2014
A breakdown of where states with Tesla storefronts stand on the issue.

Ohio dealers launch new front in anti-Tesla battle

12:41 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 13, 2014
Ohio auto dealers are renewing their bid to block Tesla Motors' factory store model.


Audacious growth plans will stretch Tesla beyond its comfort zone

12:01 am U.S. ET | Jan. 13, 2014
In the past year, electric vehicle maker Tesla Motors has posted its first quarterly profit, quintupled its stock price, and won a near-perfect score from Consumer Reports for the Model S sedan. Now comes the hard part. Tesla founder and CEO Elon Musk wants the company's estimated 2013 U.S.


Tesla faces toughest challenge yet to meet expansion goals

12:01 am U.S. ET | Jan. 11, 2014
Tesla Motors, on a roll this past year with its highly praised Model S electric vehicle, faces its hardest challenge is yet to come: achieving CEO Elon Musk's bold goal of increasing the company's estimated 2013 volume of 20,000 units to 250,000 in the United States -- and to 500,000 globally -- by the end of the decade.

Tesla retail model faces new legal challenge in Ohio

3:56 pm U.S. ET | Dec. 19, 2013
Ohio new-car dealers aren't giving up in their fight with Tesla. After a dealership licensing amendment to block Tesla from selling vehicles in the state wasn't taken up by state legislators earlier this month, dealers are now suing several parties to have Tesla's retail license nullified, a newspaper reported today.

Tesla's plan to sell in Ohio dodges bullet

5:38 pm U.S. ET | Dec. 4, 2013
Tesla's business model appears safe in Ohio -- for now. The state's House Transportation, Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee didn't vote on a licensing amendment Tuesday that Tesla Motors Inc. says would prevent it from selling vehicles in Ohio.


State battles yield mixed results. A federal approach might be next.

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 9, 2013
After mixed results in a flurry of state-level battles with dealers over its direct-selling model, Tesla Motors is pondering whether to take the fight to Washington. The rest of the auto industry intently awaits Tesla's decision.

Tesla loses its battle to sell directly in Texas

12:01 am U.S. ET | June 3, 2013
The showdown between Tesla and Texas dealers is over -- for now -- with Tesla founder Elon Musk suffering his second straight setback in his fight to sell electric cars directly to consumers.

Tesla falters in Texas; N.C. fight goes on

12:01 am U.S. ET | May 13, 2013
Elon Musk has two weeks to convince Texas legislators that he deserves an exemption to current state law that would allow him to sell his Tesla electric vehicles directly to consumers. It will be a long shot.

Tesla store license rejected by Virginia

4:28 pm U.S. ET | April 23, 2013
The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles has rejected Tesla Motors' bid for a dealership license. In a ruling issued Monday, Virginia DMV Commissioner Richard Holcomb turned down Tesla's request, which dates back to March 16, 2012.


Dislike dealer franchise laws? There's a White House sign-up sheet

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2013
Just a day after Monday's Automotive News report that Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk will consider federal options in his fight with dealers over his factory-store sales model, a petition popped up on a White House Web site urging the Obama administration to overturn state franchise laws.

Tesla's Musk: I'll take store fight federal

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 15, 2013
If Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk can't win against dealers at the state level, he will make a federal case of his bid to sell electric vehicles directly to the public through factory stores.


Musk: Why franchised dealers are wrong retail route for EVs

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 15, 2013
After testifying last week before Texas legislators, Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk talked in depth with Automotive News about his reluctance to use franchised dealers. The following is an excerpt of the interview with Automotive News reporter Amy Wilson:

Musk: Franchises are wrong route for electric vehicles

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 15, 2013
After testifying last week before Texas legislators, Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk talked about his reluctance to use franchised dealerships to sell his electric vehicles.

Tesla wins N.Y. verdict; lobbying continues in Texas

6:12 pm U.S. ET | April 11, 2013
Tesla Motors has won a round in its legal fight against franchised dealership laws in New York over direct sales to consumers while it continues to lobby Texas legislators on the issue.

8 states in Tesla's growth plan

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 8, 2013
Tesla Motors aims to add stores and service centers in at least eight more states: Minnesota, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Missouri, Nevada, Georgia, Hawaii and Virginia.

Tesla takes on Texas in latest franchise law battle

3:45 pm U.S. ET | March 29, 2013
In its latest battle with state dealer associations, electric vehicle maker Tesla Motors is trying to change existing franchise laws in Texas.


Tesla plays hardball

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 18, 2013
As dealers in some states try to tighten franchise laws to block factory-owned dealerships, Tesla is aggressively lobbying policymakers, reaching out to fans to foster public support and even countering with its own franchise law proposals.

Minn. dealers back bid to block Tesla-owned stores

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 11, 2013
Tesla Motors' plan to sell cars in Minnesota is in jeopardy because of legislation urged by the Minnesota Automobile Dealers Association.

Tesla's Musk thanks Minn. legislators for stalling franchise law rewrite

4:09 pm U.S. ET | March 8, 2013
Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk is thanking Minnesota lawmakers who blocked legislation that would prevent the electric vehicle maker from opening stores in that state. But the legislative tussle is far from over.

Tesla opposes Minnesota legislation that would block its stores

4:04 pm U.S. ET | March 6, 2013
Tesla Motors is trying to amend Minnesota legislation that would block it from opening stores and service centers in the state.

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