Skip to main content

Tesla gets another 2 weeks+ to sell cars in New Jersey as NYTimes comes out against getting banned in New York

Fun times. New Jersey is working on a compromise as

Tesla Motors will have at least 15 more days to sell its electric cars in New Jersey and legislation is in the works that may let the automaker sell directly to consumers for much longer. Tesla has been selling cars at its two company-owned stores in the state for 18 months. But the state’s Motor Vehicle Commission voted on March 11 to enforce an existing law that bans direct auto sales. Every other automaker sell only through independently-owned dealerships. Dealership associations across the country have been fighting to block Tesla’s direct sales. They argue that dealers offer car buyers competitive pricing and consumer protections…
The ban on Tesla sales was due to take effect April 1, but this week the state extended that deadline to April 15, according to Jim Appleton, president of the New Jersey dealer’s trade group. Appleton said dealers would support an even longer extension to keep Teslas on sale while the state legislature works on a compromise. But Appleton cautioned that dealers would not support Tesla being able to sell directly to consumers forever. “There needs to be a pathway for them to come into compliance with franchise laws,” he said.

Meanwhile, across the Hudson, the New York Times OpEds that Car Dealers should leave Tesla alone, and that it is a desperate and unfair way to try to defeat the upstart electric automaker.

The dealers’ associations say the laws against direct sales encourage price competition among dealers for a particular brand of car. While dealers do compete with each other, consumers can end up paying more when they buy through middlemen than directly from producers.

The fight with Tesla is not really about this niche company, which expects to sell just 35,000 cars this year. The dealers are afraid that if Tesla is allowed to sell directly to consumers, General Motors, Ford and other carmakers might be emboldened to do so as well.

Lawmakers should not be telling Tesla how it should sell its cars, especially since the company is not displacing existing dealers. There’s no reason to believe that independent dealerships would be better able to sell or service Tesla cars than the maker itself. Instead of fighting Tesla, dealers should be improving customer service.

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

You’re reading Electrek— experts who break news about Tesla, electric vehicles, and green energy, day after day. Be sure to check out our homepage for all the latest news, and follow Electrek on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay in the loop. Don’t know where to start? Check out our YouTube channel for the latest reviews.


  1. linda - 9 years ago

    Specifically, Mr. Christie and legislators want to force Tesla to sell cars through local dealers so the dealers can make a profit off of each car. Thus, we see a GOP “leader” interfering in the free marketplace. And, the same facts mean that under the GOP “logic” that’s usually hurled at Obama, Mr. Christie is now a socialist Redistributing wealth between different groups. In addition, Mr. Christie also is doing that awful thing of having “government” engage in “picking winners” and at the same time, he’s engaging in “class warfare” by supporting car dealers over Tesla’s shareholders.


Avatar for Seth Weintraub Seth Weintraub

Publisher and Editorial Director of the 9to5/Electrek sites. Tesla Model 3, X and Chevy Bolt owner…5 ebikes and counting