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Ringo64

RSS Why dealerships should embrace Tesla's direct sales competition

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Filed under: EV/Plug-in, Tesla Motors, AutoblogGreen Exclusive

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National and regional dealership associations have it in for Tesla Motors. For the past few years the organizations have been pushing lawmakers - to whom, it bears mentioning, they have made generous financial contributions - for legislation that would make it difficult for the Californian automaker to continue with its direct-to-consumer, company-store sales model. This is, of course, in addition to laws already on the books which make it illegal for manufacturers engaged with existing independent dealership networks to operate their own retail locations.

As you may have heard, the dealers have recently had success in New Jersey and, previously, in Texas. Arizona passed a law in 2000 that forbids manufacturers from obtaining a dealer's license, completing the triad of states which now restrict sales from Tesla stores. Meanwhile, the company has had some amount of success pushing back against these efforts in Massachusetts, Ohio, New York and North Carolina. It is a constant battle, though, even in most of those locales.

Direct sales are key to Tesla's success.

Direct sales are key to Tesla's success. It's a big part of how the company managed to move from a simple start up to something of an American automotive phenomenon. While CEO Elon Musk likes to say that it uses this method because selling an electric car would somehow be a conflict of interest for dealerships that also sell conventionally- powered vehicles, there is really a lot more to it than that, and it's wrapped around the customer experience. You can sit at home in your pajamas and configure exactly which color and options you want for your Model S over the Internet, send an electronic payment and have that exact car arrive at your door some weeks later.

The company stores are an outgrowth of that concept, but allow you to see physical samples of the colors and materials involved, take a test drive and interface with a friendly human who can immediately answer any questions you might have, as well as facilitate financial transactions. You still get the exact car that you order.

Continue reading Why dealerships should embrace Tesla's direct sales competition

Why dealerships should embrace Tesla's direct sales competition originally appeared on Autoblog Green on Thu, 20 Mar 2014 18:45:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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