For the fifth time in less than six years, the California New Car Dealers Association sent a letter of complaint to the state's Department of Motor Vehicles last week regarding Tesla's advertising practices.
The association contends Tesla's advertisements violate state and federal advertising and consumer protection laws.
Dealers in numerous states have long challenged Tesla's business practice of selling vehicles without a franchise system -- a grievance that intensified with Tesla's decision to primarily move to online sales.
"Our end goal is to ensure compliance with the law so that consumers and ethical dealers have a level playing field," Brian Maas, president of California dealer association, told Automotive News.
The association has called into question Tesla's:
• Advertising of vehicle price, payment amounts and finance terms. The association cited tweets by Tesla CEO Elon Musk that advertised vehicle prices without the required disclosures.
• Advertising vehicle Autopilot systems even though full self-driving capabilities are not yet available.
• Accepting consumer deposits before the vehicle is available and refusing to refund deposits before vehicle delivery.
• Using unlicensed salespeople as part of a customer referral program.
• Conducting illegal vehicle raffles in which Tesla owners who refer new customers are entered to win a Founders Series Model Y and a Founders Series Roadster supercar.