No one can deny that Tesla has not only set the car industry on a brand new path of innovation and technology, but the way cars are being sold as well. It has been unheard of to contact your local car manufacturer and order your next new car. That’s what dealerships are for – right? Well, according to Tesla, there is nothing wrong with ordering your car straight from them, or just go online and place your order via the internet. This not only cuts out the middle man and, imaginably helps keep costs down, but seems efficient and proactive.
The states aren’t happy about cutting out the middle man though and North Carolina is one state that is doing something about it. They are trying to push through a bill that would ban direct automaker to customer sales, within their own state anyway. Tesla has all ready sold about 80 cars to North Carolina residents and have reservations for 60 more – and they intend to open a showroom. But not, of course, if the state leaders have their way. They would also like to make it illegal to order new cars online although no one can quite figure out how they would manage to keep a watchful eye on that sort of thing.
The North Carolina Automobile Dealers Association (NCADA) which includes is on board with the state Senate Commerce Committee to help make this ban go through. According to Senater Tom Apodaca (R), he is sponsoring the bill to help stop unfair competition between manufacturers and dealers. Diarmuid O’Connell, Tesla’s vice president for corporate and business development, disagrees. He states that the bill is “a protectionist move to lock down the market so we have to go through the middleman – the dealer – to sell our cars.”
North Carolina isn’t the only state that has a problem with how Tesla wants to sell their creations. Texas, Massachusetts, Minnesota and New York also have problems with the dealer free distribution model. Elon Musk has commented that he is considering going to Congress to get factory to customer sales legalized throughout the country.