• 28
The fine folks at Mojo Motors recently put together a US map showing where the Tesla Model S electric vehicles can and can't be legally sold. They marked the "legal" states in blue, "illegal" states in red and "in legislation" states in that proverbial gray area. And darn if that colorful map didn't match up pretty well with a political-party map of the country.

24 states are technically Tesla-ready.

Of the 50 US states, 24 states are technically Tesla-ready, in addition to Washington, DC. And while some (California, New York, Massachusetts and Washington State) were pretty obvious, others (Mississippi and Georgia, for example) surprised us a little. We were also interested to see that Arizona and West Virginia were marked as "in legislation" but Ohio and New Jersey were not, given the fights there. In any case, Texas is red. Bright red. Tesla Supercharger locations are also marked, but Tesla's constantly updated map is likely a better source for that info after a few weeks have passed.

If you'd like to dig into the nitty gritty of the various dealer franchise laws, then use the same source that Mojo Motors' marketing manager Max Katsarelas used to make the map, an article in the Georgia State University Law Review from 2002. Check out footnote 153 on page 23 for all the details. While he did integrate current news reports, Katsarelas told AutoblogGreen that he had to update the map recently after finding out that Oregon and Indiana do allow Tesla sales. With the ongoing legislation fights, we don't expect this map to remain current all that long. Still, you can even click it to enlarge.

The legality of Tesla being able to sell directly to consumers without third-party dealership franchises could some day change from the patchwork you see above into a single color. Recently, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) went on record as saying that Missouri and New Jersey should reconsider its policies that would prevent automakers from direct consumer sales. It's not a national rule, but it is a step in that direction.


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 28 Comments
      Joeviocoe
      • 11 Months Ago
      "If you want to purchase a car, you would have to buy at TeslaMotors.com and then arrange a delivery." So even where they "CAN'T SELL CARS"... you CAN still get a car. It just takes a bit more time (but since there is a waiting list anyway, it may only add a week to the normal wait time).
        Jesse
        • 11 Months Ago
        @Joeviocoe
        Getting a car is one thing...having the ability to get it serviced in your state is another.
      • 11 Months Ago
      considering that most of Teslas profits come from selling California credits that Cali blackmails the other car companies into purchasing from Tesla I not surprised that Elon has ignored the other states ... he can't make money selling in 49 other states ...
      Actionable Mango
      • 11 Months Ago
      I seem to remember a while ago Tesla took this issue to Federal court on the grounds that states were making laws that interfered with interstate commerce. Whatever happened to that? Is this the type of thing that will take 10 years to get through the court system?
        brotherkenny4
        • 11 Months Ago
        @Actionable Mango
        The supreme court would likely never rule on this preferring to allows such mundane things to be determined in a lower court. If we actually believed what we say we do (at least at our governmental level - congress- president - supreme court) then all courts at all levels would decide rather quickly that the dealership laws interfer with interstate commerce, are anti free trade, against capitalism and serve no purpose except to protect unneeded businesses. You might also make the argument that they are unconstitutional as they limit individuals rights to life liberty and the pursuit of happiness, since it limits, with no benefit to people at large, the choice an individual can make regarding his or her own choice of vehicle purchase and method of said purchase. If one could show the benefit of dealerships outweight this right to liberty then you'd have an argument for the dealership laws. However, everyone knows it's patronage by the politicians who get money to protect their dealership buddies. I have never heard a legitimate reason for dealerships. It's all made up garbage to cow the brainwashed masses. It's also funny that they are typically right wingers who pay a lot of lip service to freedom, but never really mean it. In fact, this and many other instances show that they don't mean it at all. They just know that most rednecks are dumb, and will believe any garbage they spew out there. They are actually facists who hate freedom and intelligence.
          atc98092
          • 11 Months Ago
          @brotherkenny4
          There is only one legitimate reason for the dealership laws. It protects someone who pays a lot of money in franchise fees to the manufacturer from having that same manufacturer open a competing dealership nearby. Since the factory is going to be able to undercut a franchisee, it's unfair competition. Since Tesla does not follow this model, i.e. there are no franchisees to protect, these laws should not apply to them. The laws should not protect a dealership from a competing dealership of another brand.
          Actionable Mango
          • 11 Months Ago
          @brotherkenny4
          You lost me with all your hate spewing.
        JakeY
        • 11 Months Ago
        @Actionable Mango
        Tesla is considering taking to it Federal court if the tables turn too much against them fighting state by state. I don't believe they have done so yet. Right now even in states that are banning Tesla there's still a chance of overturning and might be a path of less resistance. If Tesla does take it federal, it has a chance of affecting state laws that might even make it so existing automakers can have their own stores and there's not way NADA won't put up a huge fight against Tesla.
          Actionable Mango
          • 11 Months Ago
          @JakeY
          Yes you are right. I looked it up and it's something Tesla is simply considering. They haven't pulled the trigger on that yet.
      Mike
      • 11 Months Ago
      They can sell in all states. Either by direct sales or by a dealership.. OK end of story
        Joeviocoe
        • 11 Months Ago
        @Mike
        They cannot sell in dealerships. Not without signing a franchise agreement. And once a franchise agreement is signed, they can never sell direct again... because the franchisee would have every right to claim disenfranchisement.
      Letstakeawalk
      • 11 Months Ago
      Service isn't a problem. The Rangers make house calls.
      paulwesterberg
      • 11 Months Ago
      Tesla does offer mobile ranger service for people living farther away.
      • 11 Months Ago
      They can not even install superchargers.. Do USA not have free marked? From Norway
        danfred311
        • 11 Months Ago
        It's land of the corrupt, home of the ignorant. But I don't think they have been blocked from setting up superchargers though.
        Joeviocoe
        • 11 Months Ago
        Huh? There are no laws or restrictions for Superchargers.... this is FOR SALES ONLY. Each Supercharger must undergo permitting depending on exact location... but nothing to do with franchise law. And No, we have a quasi-free market.... that is influenced from government, special interests, and the corporations that get large enough to prefer protectionism rather than free market.
      Allan W Kesick
      • 11 Months Ago
      The auto industry has stagnated. Innovation is hard to come by, Everyone, big three and others, are scrambling to catch up with what Telsa offers the public. When people are not offered anything new except the few piddling mpg increase, the public had no choice but to take what crumbs they could find and run with it. What do you expect when Telsa comes along and make some old better! War was the label given to was happening between Telsa and the gasoline burning auto-makers. You should be happy that this war is happening. History has proven that innovation only comes when there is competition! and Telsa Motors has given them that and then some!
      Joeviocoe
      • 11 Months Ago
      Riiiight, which is why I said. "SERVICE CENTERS" are legal in all 50 states. Franchise laws don't say anything about service. Only sales. So Tesla is free to build Service Centers anywhere they like, as the demand for them increases. But I doubt they'll need that many even when selling 500,000 / year... since ota repairs handle software issues, and electrical components last much longer (especially when a hot engine isn't cooking wiring, connectors and sensors.
      Dave D
      • 11 Months Ago
      It's embarrassing that this looks so close to a political map. When did Republican become anti competition? I'm embarrassed as someone who spent my life voting Republican.
        RoyEMunson
        • 11 Months Ago
        @Dave D
        Yeah, was thinking the same thing. This map is not exactly a good example of a free market. BTW, I have always voted Republican as well. Now, I consider myself an independent, but tend to lean more to liberal these days. Some conservatives are doing their damnedest to alienate voters, and its working.
      • 10 Months Ago
      The EV1 was virtually maintenance free. Think electric. No belts,hoses transmissions, oils, anti freeze, radiators etc etc. There was nothing to wear out except tires and to replace the battery if it went out. The people who had these cars absolutely loved them and for no reason (humanly logical reason) was pulled out of circulation and sent to the crusher.
      BraveLil'Toaster
      • 11 Months Ago
      Yeah, it's almost like Cons don't believe in the free market or something.
    • Load More Comments