Politicians, Car Dealers Trying To Make It Illegal To Buy A Tesla In North Carolina

from the hating-on-disruptive-innovation dept

Last fall, we wrote about how auto dealers were bitching about the fact that electric car company Tesla sells their cars directly. It has "stores" but you can't buy your cars from those stores, due to antiquated and ridiculous regulations about car sales. Most states have laws that basically say that car companies can't sell directly. These laws serve no purpose other than to protect (often politically powerful) independent car dealers from being disintermediated.

In North Carolina, however, they're taking it up a notch. They're basically trying to make it illegal to sell a Tesla in North Carolina at all. About 80 North Carolina residents have already bought one, but they may be the last:
A legislative proposal, backed by the N.C. Automobile Dealers Association, would make it illegal for Tesla, or any other car maker, to bypass dealerships and sell directly in the state. The proposal cuts at the heart of Tesla’s business model: selling luxury cars over the phone or Internet and then delivering them to the front door of high-net-worth customers.
The North Carolina State Commerce Committee approved the proposal unanimously.

This is the same thing we see over and over again in other contexts. Companies in an entrenched legacy position trying to use regulations to block disruptive upstarts. There is no good reason for this law other than to block Tesla and to prop up dealerships. It's somewhat disgusting to see politicians actively seek to stamp out innovation.

Filed Under: dealers, north carolina, regulations, tesla
Companies: tesla


Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread


  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 13 May 2013 @ 1:02pm

    Re: Re:

    Is that why? Well, I see some problems with that.

    First, when that law was made, there was probably only Ford, Chrysler, and GM that people could pick from. Today, you have a lot more imports that can give competition.

    Second, even if you make a bunch of dealerships, the companies STILL have a monopoly on their product. They can charge whatever they like to the dealerships, who pass the costs on to the consumer. Having a middleman or not doesn't change that.

    Third, you're punishing companies that had nothing to do with those abuses, since they did not even exist at the time. If companies are abusing a monopoly, then antitrust laws should kick in, but only for those companies.

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Techdirt Gear
Shop Now: Copying Is Not Theft
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads

Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.