Tesla’s Vice President of Regulatory Affairs Discusses Direct Sales – Video

APR 20 2015 BY MARK KANE 11

Tesla Motors store

Inside Tesla Motors store

Tesla’s battle over direct sales of cars in Utah continues after the state’s first store launch was stopped one month ago.

Tesla’s Vice President of Regulatory Affairs James Chen recently discussed the situation of the first store in Salt Lake City.

This interesting presentation clearly shows that the Tesla ban is illegal, because it does not take into account dealer protection from manufacturers, who would have an advantage by opening their own stores.

Noteworthy is that Tesla already opened 10 Superchargers in Utah.

“Recently Tesla Motors attempted to open a store/service station in Salt Lake City, Utah. After initially getting a go ahead from the state regulatory board to begin work Tesla invested several million dollars upgrading and renovating a facility on State Street. Unfortunately, several days before they were scheduled to open, the state informed them that they would not be allowed to open the facility under current state laws. James Chen from Tesla discusses the situation and possible outcomes moving forward.”

Categories: Tesla


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11 Comments on "Tesla’s Vice President of Regulatory Affairs Discusses Direct Sales – Video"

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It’s a sad state of affairs that Tesla Motors has to -have- a Vice President of Regulatory Affairs.

Well, there’s a story that in the early days of the motorcar, one State had a law that any motorcar had to be proceeded by a person walking on foot, waving a red flag, supposedly to warn anyone driving horses, or riding one, that something unexpected was coming.

Dunno if that’s true or not, but the use of State laws (intended to protect auto dealers from predatory business practices by the auto manufacturers) to keep Tesla Motors from selling its cars in various States will one day seem every bit as quaint.


Wasn’t it for the first trains (that didn’t move faster than 5 mph anyway..) ?

He is really and measured in his explanation. This is why we need diplomatic and well spoken representatives, to ‘splain things to people.
I think the point that Tesla is not covered by franchise law since they have no franchises, is incontrovertible under the very definition of what a franchise is. No matter. Money talks and you know what walks. Nada has lots of coinage, and thwarting Tesla at every turn is certainly on the top of their agenda. And yes, after many years of simply ripping off and scamming the public with various schemes and methodologies to get the most from the buyer for each vehicle they sell, they are schooled in maintaining their monopolistic position, and certainly the surreptitious addition of amendments to bills at the last minute with no debate, is in their playbook, along with host of other, to extend the football analogy, in deference to their sponsoring of Pop Warner football, end runs, blitzes, paying off the refs, etc…Whatever it takes to win.

It’s also clear from the video why Tesla must never sign a dealer agreement anywhere, because as soon as they do they will by default become like any other car manufacturer in the eyes of the regulator, regardless of the circumstance. Gotta stay above the franchise model.

How about some NRA style bumper stickers for these states?

“I’m a Tesla owner…and I vote.”

Or also…

“I’m a TSLA owner…and I vote.”


Utah is a very republican state and the drill baby drill party has taken to not liking ev’s too much. Remember Romney called tesla a loser and fox seldom has a kind word for the electric car.

But his dad and grandpappy could have as many wives as they wanted! 😀

Looking at the divorce rate in this country where men and women have difficulty maintaining a loving relationship, I couldn’t fathom trying to juggle keeping multiple wives happy!

Utah is a conservative Republican state run by the Book of Mormons.