Dealers Annoyed with Tesla Motors Showrooms and Service Centers

Deal­ers serv­ing the high-end lux­u­ry mar­ket are not hap­py to see elec­tric car­mak­er Tes­la Motors open up sev­er­al styl­ish out­lets, or that the com­pa­ny is offer­ing ser­vice pro­grams to buy­ers of their Mod­el S sedan. The Mass­a­chu­setts State Auto­mo­bile Deal­ers Asso­ci­a­tion, and oth­er deal­er orga­ni­za­tions, are call­ing the net­work ille­gal, vio­lat­ing decades-old law. These asso­ci­a­tions are lob­by­ing to make it ille­gal for automak­ers to sell cars direct­ly to con­sumers, and there’s con­cern in four states about the deal­er­ships being legal.

Tesla’s stores are a bit dif­fer­ent – essen­tial­ly show­rooms to gain con­sumer inter­est and edu­ca­tion. For those impressed and want­i­ng to buy, they’re direct­ed to a com­put­er to make their deposit and place their order.

How the vehi­cles will be ser­viced is up there with the sales envi­ron­ment. Tes­la is build­ing ded­i­cat­ed ser­vice facil­i­ties close to Mod­el S own­ers. By March of next year, more than 90% of all cur­rent Mod­el reser­va­tion hold­ers will be with­in 100 miles of a Tes­la Ser­vice Cen­ter, and more than 80% will be with­in 50 miles. Each state has its own laws deal­ing with sales and ser­vice cen­ters, and it will take a while for all of it to be straight­ened out.

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