Following his big battery swap reveal in California Thursday night, Tesla CEO Elon Musk is turning his eye to New York. That's where a new tactic by the local auto dealers could put a damper on Tesla's electric-vehicle success story.

"Just heard that NY auto dealers are sneaking through a bill to shut down Tesla in NY" - Elon Musk

Specifically, Green Car Reports says, there are two nearly identical bills being stealthily moved through the New York state legislature (Assembly bill A07844 and State bill S05725) that would prohibit the state from registering any vehicles that had not been sold through an independent third party (i.e., a dealer). The move prompted Musk to Tweet, "Just heard that NY auto dealers are sneaking through a bill to shut down Tesla in NY. Please call your state senator!" He later sent out, "NY Assembly passing bill to shut down Tesla, but Senate holding the line. Appreciate senators resisting influence of auto dealer lobby."

It's the latest round in a fight that started when the state dealers filed a suit against Tesla's dealer-free sales method in late 2012. The New York Supreme Court ruled earlier this year that the dealers could not use the Franchised Dealer Act as a reason to sue competitors. The New York State Automobile Dealers Association has a letter (PDF) claiming the support of out-of-state groups like the Alliance of Automotive Manufacturers and the Global Alliance of Manufacturers. Tesla currently has three stores in New York, in Roosevelt Field, New York City and Westchester and two service centers there, in Queens and White Plains, and one more planned (in Long Island).

That outside support makes sense, since Tesla is embroiled in a struggle with dealers in other states (Massachusetts and Texas come to mind). Nationwide, dealers are putting up quite a fight against Tesla, which makes sense when you realize the automaker is the first to give them this much of a challenge before, at least in recent memory. Since Musk has talked about taking the dealer fight national, we don't think this is the last we'll hear of this story.


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  • 417 Comments
      • 1 Year Ago
      just another peril in limiting FREEDOM. Personally I hope Tesla fails since we are subsidizing each car.But if you want one go for it as for NY they are as dumb as a box of rocks if they pass this law
        • 19 Hours Ago
        Tesla isn't being subsidized. It paid back the loan and the gov't got several tens of millions of dollars in profit. The oil companies on the other hand are being subsidized as is the airline industry. If those two industries are profitable why the multimillionaire dollar subsidies each one gets?
        Grendal
        • 19 Hours Ago
        Tesla is currently subsidized $0.00. You do get a $7500 tax credit. That means you get to keep your own money you earned instead of giving it to the government. When did it become a good thing to give the government more of your money, Chris?
        Danny
        • 19 Hours Ago
        Yeah, it would be stupid to buy the car that is by far the MOST AMERICAN MADE CAR IN THE WORLD, (96% by production cost of parts, 94.1% by labor hour). We need all REAL AMERICANS like yourself to boycott Tesla and send a clear message to automakers that we are not going to stand for ANY ATTEMPT TO STEM OUTSOURCING OF JOBS OVERSEAS. If we're not careful, Walmart could get to the point that they would have to pay employees so much money they WOULD NOT QUALIFY FOR FOODSTAMPS!!
        labourboss
        • 19 Hours Ago
        If you were here 125 years ago you would be the one hollering "Get a horse".
      coinorth
      • 1 Year Ago
      Out with the old in with the new.
      hdprent
      • 1 Year Ago
      It was very hard for me to buy my Tesla financially but I believe in electric autos and invested in the car. I'm affended when told only the rich can afford one and hear the complaints about the rebates. Well this car is the begining and the prices will come down as the tecnology improves. I can not express the diffference between my Tesla and the other cars I've owned, it is just heads and tails better. I think many of the complainers are the same as those who shouted get a horse when the combustion engine cars came out. I like Tesa because it isn't only the future but its totally American made.
        jeff
        • 19 Hours Ago
        @hdprent
        Excellent point, I am not rich, but I can buy a Tesla. I have worked hard and save o get to this point. I think that the Tesla Model S (or X) will be my retirement car of choice....
      hlgeorge39
      • 1 Year Ago
      Prohibiting Tesla from establishing dealerships (non-independent, self owned) seems like an infringement to the pursuit of happiness that other dealerships enjoy, in other words- unconstitutional.
      Grendal
      • 1 Year Ago
      You could set up rules so the little guy doesn't get screwed. Simplifying the tax code can't be anything but a good thing. Start by getting rid of all the big business exceptions.
      • 1 Year Ago
      Small typo in the article: It's a SENATE not State bill. "Assembly bill A07844 and State bill S05725)"
      paul91745
      • 1 Year Ago
      Auto DEALERS are NOTHING but SCUMMY PEOPLE!!! You LITTLE girls scared of TESLA??
      Scooter
      • 1 Year Ago
      This is clearly insane. Its Tesla's mission "not to seek profits from service". It has been a dealerships mission for a long time "to seek profits from service". Often silly, and unnecessary services. I recently went with my friend to get his 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer serviced since it was struggling to accelerate and the engine sounded like it was having a hard time. These men in spiffy color trimmed uniforms came out with clip boards and checklists talking about $150 for this, $300 for that...etc. At the end of it all, they didn't really check anything, but rather told him, we simply "reccommend" this list of services be done according to mileage. I asked him, "So you didn't really check these things" (air filter, cabin filter, tire alignment, other fluids) he said "no, we just go according to schedule." Almost two hours later my friend was charged $400 for a transmission flush, and basically got the run-around, with no solution to his actual problem. During that same time an older woman was also getting charged an appointment and service fee to get anti-freeze poured in her car. These places are down right evil. During the time we waited for his car to be serviced, we went next door to a Ford lot to check out the Focus ST and Explorer. A salesman immediately began harassing us. We made it clear we were only browsing, and he still refused to leave us alone. In fact he began questioning my friends financial situation and kept insisting he could offer him a deal on a new Ford. This salesman persisted for about 15 solid minutes. He only stopped when my friend mentioned he had some credit issues. Another example of slimy dealers. My cigarette lighter socket went dead and wouldn't work. So I called the dealership. Nobody would tell me anything. The serviceman I spoke to refused to give me any clues or ideas on what it could be, and was only offering me to set up a $90 appointment. These guys are slime balls. What they are doing is wrong. I urge people to write their law makers over this. I know I plan to. (Texas)
        express2day
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Scooter
        It's naive to think that Tesla is definitely going to ultimately be any better than other manufacturers once they get out of their "honeymoon" phase of very minimal competition in the EV market. Sure, they can talk about not wanting to "seek profits from service" but they will definitely be seeking profits and if not from service they will simply have to make it up in other ways at the consumers' expense. There's no such thing as a "free lunch" and the bottom line will be just as important to them as it is to other corporations. Tesla owned and run dealerships could end up being just as bad or even worse than today's average dealerships. Tesla hasn't come close to being tested yet (i.e. with REAL competition) to know how good or bad they can be.
      Dave D
      • 1 Year Ago
      Disgusting animals, these dealers, their associations and their lobbies. The state senators who sponsored these sneak attacks on their constituents need to be highlighted in every way possible. They need to know that taking lobby money that damages the public will be exposed.
      E
      • 1 Year Ago
      A true car fan like myself who doesn't have the cash to buy one of these can spend ALL day at one of their locations without a dealer getting on my balls. TESLA ROCKS!
      bluepongo1
      • 1 Year Ago
      All caps & obvious trolls = thread over / nothing of value, moving on to the next Tesla Blog Green story.
      Ted Smith
      • 1 Year Ago
      THE ELECTRIC CAR FAILED 100 YEARS AGO. IT WILL FAIL AGAIN NOW. THE TESLA WILL CONTINUE THAT TREND.
        speedjohn
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Ted Smith
        You obviously know nothing. Look up what a barrel of oil and a gallon of gas cost a hundred years ago. And then look up mpg's that Model Ts got - which basically had gas coming out of the tailpipe. ICs are inefficient for passengers cars. Lithium battery technology is just getting started and will follow Moore's law of processor power, which says it can double speed and efficiency every 18 months or so. Electric motors are simple and plain so the battery or (ultra capacitor) is the only impediment. In 10-15 years more than half of passenger cars will be electric with ranges over 300 miles and the ability to charge in 10-15 minutes. E.E, M.B.A
        criterion29
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Ted Smith
        big bucks OIL killed it, just like Nicola Tesla was killed by bug bucks electric company, but Niagra electic is still running today
        lord.phaggle
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Ted Smith
        Says the person with an overrated and obsolete gun as their avatar.
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Ted Smith
        OIL!!! 'MERICA!!!
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Ted Smith
        SAMUEL CLEMENTS SAID YOU WILL NEVER KNOW A MANS IGNORANCE TILL HE OPENS HIS MOUTH
        fred
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Ted Smith
        The electric car didn't fail. Gasoline was the cheaper of the two in those days.
          Mudotaku
          • 1 Year Ago
          @fred
          Also, batteries 100 years ago weren't as good as today's batteries.
          David
          • 1 Year Ago
          @fred
          Yea, that argument is not gonna convince someone who has an avatar of a gun with a start production year of 1947.
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