Michigan Bans Tesla From Opening Stores In State
Michigan isn’t getting into the Tesla business: officials have rejected a bid by Tesla Motors to open retail stores in the state, echoing a similar ban in the state of Missouri. Basically, if you live in Michigan and you want to buy a Tesla, you’ll have to either buy one online, or drive to one of the Tesla gallery stores in Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus or Indianapolis.
Naturally, the issue is that Tesla is trying to market directly to potential buyers without going through a franchised dealer. Tesla made their motion, which was heard in a September 7th legal panel. On Thursday, they published their final decision: no dealership license for Tesla would be granted.
“The license was denied because state law explicitly requires a dealer to have a bona fide contract with an auto manufacturer to sell its vehicles,” said Gisgie Gendreau, spokeswoman for Secretary of State Ruth Johnson. “Tesla has told the department it does not have one, and cannot comply with that requirement.”
But Tesla is not going to give up that easily, stating their intention to fight the law banning them from acquiring a dealership license.
“As part of the process of challenging the legality of that law, Tesla applied for a license in Michigan,” a statement from Tesla read. “Tesla will continue to take steps to defend the rights of Michigan consumers.”
All in all, I understand the ruling, even if it sucks for people trying to purchase a Tesla. However, it’s a new age for consumers, and it’s easier to acquire things now than just about any other time in history, thanks to the internet. And if you can’t purchase one online or have it shipped, well, odds are that if you can afford a Tesla in the first place, you can probably afford to drive to a different state to pick it up. Still, this is a big blow for Tesla’s attempts to expand to different states. I mean, three of their stores are in Ohio, for crying out loud. It wouldn’t surprise me if they were desperate to get into other states. But it’s looking like it’s going to be an uphill battle.
What do you think about Michigan banning Tesla from opening stores? Sound off in the comments!
And for more automotive news, find out why Ford is moving all small car production to Mexico!