• Stop being a LURKER - join our dealer community and get involved. Sign up and start a conversation.

Near Death Experience? Tesla vs Auto Dealerships

Jeff Kershner

May 1, 2005
First Name
New York Assembly Shelves Bill That Would ‘Shut Down' Tesla Sales In The State

New York Assembly Shelves Bill That Would ‘Shut Down’ Tesla Sales In The State | TechCrunch

Tesla founder and CEO Elon Musk rallied against the proposed bills on Twitter late last week:
Just heard that NY auto dealers are sneaking through a bill to shut down Tesla in NY. Please call your state senator!—
Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 21, 2013

NY auto dealers are trying to ram the bill thru quickly while no one is looking. Please call now nysenate.gov/senators—
Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 21, 2013

The kill Tesla bill in NY was stopped in the 11th hour due to public outcry. Am super grateful to everyone who helped.—
Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 23, 2013

"It’s good news that the bills have been set aside, but it just goes to show the lengths that entrenched industries will go to fight back against disruption from the new generation of technology-first companies. Tesla’s fight against auto dealers is probably not over yet."


Lot Lizard
Sep 15, 2011
First Name
Tesla scores big win in North Carolina in battle over car sales, business practices

Tesla scores big win in North Carolina in battle over car sales | Digital Trends

Clearly, tech heads aren’t the only ones who have been wooed by being in a Tesla Model S.

Test drives provided to key political figures in North Carolina in the all-electric vehicle might have helped to kill a bill that would have even made it illegal for Tesla to send e-mails to potential customers in the state as part of its unique business model, according to The News Observer based in Raleigh.

The proposed measure, backed by North Carolina’s Automobile Dealers Association, was included as part of the state’s auto-franchise bill. However, following House Speaker Thom Tillis’ test drive of the Tesla Model S and glowing comments about the sedan, the N.C. House decided to approve a new version of the franchise bill without the anti-Tesla provisions.

North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory took a test drive in the Tesla S as well, according to the Raleigh based news site.
James Chen, Tesla’s public policy director, was reportedly on hand when the House made the decision to revise the bill. “I think folks understood that this was an attack on the free market, that this would have precluded North Carolinians from having the freedom to choose the cars they wanted to purchase,” Chen said, as reported by the News Observer.

When asked whether McCrory and Tillis’ test drives helped Tesla’s cause, Chen responded: “I’m sure.”
That being said, Tesla might want to get a couple of Model S sedans over to legislators in New York for a few test spins. Legislators there have tabled an anti-Tesla provision similar to the one struck down in North Carolina, which is likely to be taken back up when the house resumes in January.

Last edited:


Uncle Joe
Apr 7, 2009
First Name
Should Elon Musk win, the dealer business (as we know it) will forever change.

Why? How? Let's follow the money...

#1) Tesla establishes a factory direct retail model (ala Apple)
#2) Wall Street money loves success from disruption. Wall Street investors reward TSLA (IPO at $19, 4yrs later now $240)
#2a) Money is power. Wall Street loves $TSLA so much, it's valued at 50% of GM's valuation
#2b) Wall Street expects Tesla will take this to the Federal Courts*
#3) If Tesla wins, they'll throw money at other players** to come and sell direct.
#4). OEMs will work hard at breaking off and selling direct (BMW & MB experimenting)

This is an epic battle that you'll tell your grandkids. No need to stress, there's not a thing you can do but watch it all unfold over the next 5 years:popcorn:

*“If we’re seeing nonstop battles at the state level, rather than fight twenty different state battles, I’d rather fight one federal battle.” Amy Wilson, Tesla’s Musk: I’ll Take Store Fight Federal, Automotive News, Apr. 15, 2013. [link]

**A few giant players: TATA motors of India from China big players there is Chery, Greely, Chang'an (Imagine a brand new sedan for $9,990) Chinese Carmakers Go Global - Forbes


Super Moderator
May 19, 2011
First Name
My head is still spinning since you told me that a few days ago :crazy:

There was a reason for this though. It's not about how many cars GM makes or sells, it's about the market dominance.
GM may supply X% of the global market for gas powered vehicles, trucks, etc.
Tesla owns/owned 100% of the sport electric market, 100% of the 200km+ electric vehicle market, etc.

Obviously a good portion of the valuation comes from the fact that it's a disruptive business model, has huge future potential, etc.