General Motors has, for as long as we can remember, staunchly objected to Tesla’s sales technique. The all-electric automobile startup continues to sell vehicles directly to consumers in states that allow the practice. One of those, for the time being at least, is Indiana.
General Motors has released a statement in response to the bill’s expiration, reported by Autoblog, which allows Tesla to practice direct-to-consumer sales for a certain period of time, and the license can’t be renewed.
It’s clear GM is protecting its product, the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV, from unfair competitive advantages. However, that depends on which side you stand on, as Tesla continues to state GM authored the bill to protect its own interests.
The statement reads as follows:
GM supports HB 1254. GM believes that all industry participants should operate under the same rules and requirements on fundamental issues that govern how we sell, service and market our products.
A benefit of a nationwide network of thousands of dealerships is that General Motors customers never have to worry about driving to another state to buy, service or support their vehicles.
Tesla’s insistence on special rules could result in multiple manufacturers competing with similarly capable vehicles and similar price points, yet operating under a different set of rules.
Tesla could open a franchised dealership with an independent operator in Indiana today, but instead they insist that the State must first provide them with unique rules and special exceptions to suit their own business interests. In fact, Tesla was willing to agree to a dealer model in Virginia. The Indiana legislature shouldn’t create a special exemption for them here.
GM would not comment on if the automaker had any role in writing the legislation.