NY Auto Dealers Trying To Make It Illegal To Register A New Tesla In The State…Naturally (UPDATE 2)

JUN 21 2013 BY JAY COLE 24

CBS News channel 6 is reporting that lawmakers in New York are reviewing a bill (or two)  that would make it impossible to register a new Tesla product in the state.

If passed no new car registrations could come from “non dealers” in the future.

As it is illegal to drive an unregistered vehicle in New York, this would effective block Tesla from any sales model of any kind that does not include franchised dealers, whether than be direct/boutique stores or direct over the Internet.

Who is behind such an action?  New York State auto dealers of course.

According to ABC News 6:

“The company uses eight New York suppliers to produce the vehicles, a spokesman said. Tesla New York employs 35 people at three different downstate locations, added the spokesman. The bill to prohibit registering cars from non dealers is in the codes committee of the assembly.

The full package was approved by the Assembly in a 97-to-47 vote.”

And is Tesla’s founder Elon Musk happy?  One only has to look to twitter to find out:

Elon Musk:  To The Bat Pole!  Or Was It Twitter?

Elon Musk: To The Bat Pole! Or Was It Twitter?

To view the two proposed bills you can find them here (S05725) and here (A07844).

CBS 6 – Albany

Update: Tesla has released this official statement on the matter:

“The bottom line for New York consumers and New York suppliers is that if this bill passes, special interests in Albany will once again have gotten their way while robbing New Yorkers of choices in the marketplace, and Tesla will be put out of business in New York. The result would be that all of Tesla’s New York employees will lose their jobs.  It means that New York-based suppliers to Tesla will lose business and New York consumers cannot buy the most advanced electric car in the world today. Banning Tesla from selling its vehicles is also a step in the wrong direction for reducing carbon vehicle emissions and the green environmental movement in New York.  With the State of New York pushing so hard to lead green innovation supporting entire agencies for energy efficiency like NYSERDA, it is absolutely defies logic to ban Tesla from selling electric cars in New York.”

“From the beginning, Tesla’s goal has been to catalyze the market for electric vehicles and selling through intermediaries at this stage of the company will not work.  For Auto Dealer Associations to claim that restricting competition is in the best interests of the public is wrong and defies obvious common sense.  If we are kept out of New York, it forestalls progress and defeats innovation.”

“Tesla has created jobs in New York at both its stores and service centers and the sales of its vehicles go into supporting the local economy. Tesla remains committed to bringing electric vehicle technology and its customer focused sales and ownership experience to New York consumers, while complying with all local and state laws.”

Update 2: Tesla wins….for now.

Quoting Automotive News:

“New York’s Assembly set aside a bill that Tesla Motors Inc. had said would shut down its operations in the state.”

“The lower chamber adjourned its legislative session late Friday without acting on the measure. Lawmakers in the Assembly aren’t scheduled to reconvene until January.”

Categories: Tesla


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24 Comments on "NY Auto Dealers Trying To Make It Illegal To Register A New Tesla In The State…Naturally (UPDATE 2)"

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Ok, why can’t Musk establish a new company, let’s name it ‘Electric Dealer’, and open one dealership in each state selling Tesla through the company? It could operate on cost basis.

I have often wondered the same thing. Why can’t they just open their own dealer under a different name?

What happens with all of the cars bought off of Ebay?

Thats what I was thinking. Or maybe have Solar City because a dealer network. What would prevent that?

I meant, Solar City should become a car dealer network.

I’d love to see electric only dealerships selling all flavor a of plug ins. Chevy volts, ford focus EVs, Nissan leafs and teslas. Wonder of our friends in big government and their NADA owners would allow that to happen?

Also, obviously, Car Max could become the tesla dealer network. But that may not fly since they don’t sell “new” cars. The whole new car classification is always dumb. The minute you drive off the lot, the same dealer will offer you 20% less to buy it back as used.

Is NY trying to outdo NC in stupidity? Look for lots of NJ and CT registered Teslas. 🙂

I guess they don’t have enough exhaust fumes in New York yet.

How many other cars are registered in NY that were not from a franchise? I’m guessing quite a few.

How’s the saying go, “If you can’t beat them, join them”.. no wait… “If you can’t beat them, pass laws to stop them”.. yeah that’s it.

The truth is, this really has nothing to do with electric cars. The NADA would open their arms for Tesla if they would just operate dealerships. I see many people wrongfully saying it’s because the cars are electric or they are better and the other OEM’s are scared. If Tesla tried to sell gas cars this way they would be met with the exact same resistance. The good ole boys don’t want to let you buy ANY kind of car direct from the manufacturer, or they’ll see their precious dealership network crumble.

Fact is, every car manufacturer would LOVE to do this and sell cars direct, but they know they can’t so they don’t even try. (plus they do have contracts with their dealers) So Tesla is really the only one that can even try to do this since they aren’t harming their existing dealers. I bet you every major OEM is actually rooting for Tesla to open the door for them to try to do this in the future also.

Exactly Tom it is not really about Tesla it is about their out dated business model they are trying to protect. If the market place can’t do it run to the state houses where your money will buy you support. They know full well that most of their customers despise them and only because there is no freedom in the market do they have those customers. This will be interesting to watch but I hate to see Tesla waste resources and energy fighting this stupid issue.

All the while NYSRDA is pumping millions into rebates to install renewables! Crazy state who bow down to special interest.

Btw, as an ex NYer myself, I have seen a tremendous drain of business and resources from the state entirely due to these type of moves. NY is becoming as backwater as North Carolina and other states who cannot fathom progress. Most of my HS classmates left the state looking for jobs and prosperity.

Yeah, as a NYS resident, this is embarrassing. You’re right that state legislation and taxation (i.e. greed) have drained NYS of its once nation-leading economy. Many of my HS classmates have also left the state, mostly due to economic reasons. And then a few weeks ago, IBM let almost 700 employees go from the Hudson Valley locations. Those were high-paying white-collar jobs. Their only real hope to get another job like that is now to leave the area because NYS stifles innovation and small start-up businesses. We’re in the bottom 1/3 of the country when it comes to being small-business friendly. Sad.

Easy fix, Tesla sells cars to a third party in either Pennsylvania or NJ, then the third party sells it to the customer in NY as a used car. Problem solved.

Tesla should fight this directly. Workarounds aren’t going to work – dealers can always get a new legislation targeted at Tesla’s work around.

This should be fought in the open powerfully & decisively & may Tesla win!!!
They r scared because whether Tesla wins or looses the dealership model will eventually CRUMBLE. Evs don’t require lots of maintanace as ICE do. & dealers make money from service so no wonder even NADA tried to talk down Evs( that they loose value more than Ice) that is meant to scare or discourage customers from adopting evs

The sate loses the income from the Tax on the gas too!

I was rereading this for the updates and my Pandora popped on Metallica “And Justice for All”. Strange coincidence and seems so fitting. This should really be the new theme song for the NADA.

Check out the lyrics:

New York state just CANNOT let this happen….

If the senate and assembly pass this and Andrew Cuomo signs it into law, then NYS and Cuomo will be seen as the laughingstock of the country. I don’t care how many campaign contributions they get they will be howled out of office.

If I’m wrong, then I guess I’ll just have to buy used EV’s from now on.

I don’t get it. NY has Apple stores, right? Why can Apple sell directly to customers, but not Tesla? I thought the US was the land of the free?

Put it up to the voters. Do they want a choice or stay with the the good ol boy’s network?

I can choose to by an Apple product from any store. but I buy it from the most knowledgeable store……….Apple’s Boutique store.