| March 11
March 11 Tesla Motors Inc said New
Jersey Governor Chris Christie's administration was pushing
forward with a regulation that would hamper sales in the state
by forcing the electric-car company to use dealers instead of
selling directly to customers.
Tesla said on Tuesday the administration was undermining its
model of selling cars, while the administration says Tesla has
long known the company needed a law change to accommodate its
The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission introduced a rule in
October that made explicit the need to have a franchise license
to sell cars in the state, and that rule was due to be approved
Most traditional auto companies sell cars through franchised
In a blog posting on the company's website, Tesla said the
governor's office "has gone back on its word" to delay the
proposed "anti-Tesla" regulation so that it would be taken up by
the state's legislature.
Tesla, which currently has two stores in New Jersey, said
the regulation would effectively force it to stop sales from
those stores and prevent the company from opening further
outlets in the state.
"Having previously issued two dealer licenses to Tesla, this
regulation would be a complete reversal to the long-standing
position of (New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission) on Tesla's
stores," Tesla said on its blog.
In response, Kevin Roberts, a spokesman in the governor's
office, said since Tesla began operating a year ago in New
Jersey, "it was made clear that the company would need to engage
the Legislature on a bill to establish their new direct-sales
operations under New Jersey law."
"This administration does not find it appropriate to
unilaterally change the way cars are sold in New Jersey without
legislation and Tesla has been aware of this position since the
beginning," Roberts said in an emailed statement.
New Jersey would effectively be the third state to bar Tesla
from selling its cars directly, along with Arizona and Texas,
according to Tesla.
Tesla shares were down 0.3 percent at $238.02 in afternoon
trading on Nasdaq.