NY Dealers Reach Pact with Tesla, Direct-to-Customer Stores to Stay Open
Tesla might still be fighting an uphill battle in Texas when it comes to selling cars directly to customers, but things are looking up in the Empire State. The electric automaker recently came to an agreement with New York auto dealers that will allow its five factory stores to stay open. According to the report from Automotive News, legislation will be introduced that will allow Tesla’s stores to continue to sell directly to customers– something that the powerful auto dealer lobby had attempted to block up until this point. RELATED: See images of the Tesla Model R Concept
In a statement from NY state governor, Andrew Cuomo said that: “Today’s agreement reaffirms New York’s long-standing commitment to the dealer franchise system, while making sure New York remains a leader in spurring innovative businesses and encouraging zero emissions vehicle sales.”
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The NY auto dealers association sued Tesla in 2012, claiming that the Tesla store licenses had been granted illegally. In this new agreement, future stores would not be allowed to sell directly to the customer, but the five current stores would be grandfathered in.
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Things aren’t so rosy for Tesla on across the George Washington bridge. New Jersey governor Chris Christie recently barred the green carmakers’s two NJ stores from direct sales. Those stores will be re-branded as “galleries” on April 15. So for now, Tesla’s ability to cut out the middle man is still on a state-by-state basis.