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New Jersey prohibits Tesla from selling cars directly to consumers

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(Credit: Reuters) Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk speaks next to the company's newest Model S during the Model S Beta Event held at the Tesla factory in Fremont, California October 1, 2011.
Tesla Motors
March 12
9:10 AM 2014

Tesla will not be allowed to sell cars directly to customers in New Jersey anymore after the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission passed a rule banning them from doing so, TechCrunch reported.

The rule, which will be effective in April, makes New Jersey the third state to ban the electric car maker's direct car sales approach. Arizona and Texas had earlier banned residents from doing so. Unlike other car makers, Tesla does not depend on dealerships to get their environment-friendly vehicles sold, the report said.

Tesla was obviously not happy with the ruling. Tesla vented their ire in their official blog post, which read in part, "Since 2013, Tesla Motors has been working constructively with the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (NJMVC) and members of Governor Christie's administration to defend against the New Jersey Coalition of Automotive Retailers' (NJ CAR) attacks on Tesla's business model and the rights of New Jersey consumers. Until yesterday, we were under the impression that all parties were working in good faith."

Tesla continued that "Governor Christie's administration has gone back on its word to delay a proposed anti-Tesla regulation so that the matter could be handled through a fair process in the Legislature."

The rule change also comes in the wake of delays on the issuance of their sales licenses. Tesla said, "We are disappointed in the actions of the NJMVC and the Christie Administration, which come on the heels of more than nine months of unexplained delays in the issuing of a new sales license for Tesla, despite our numerous requests, calls, and letters. In addition, the NJMVC has also delayed the annual renewal of Tesla's current dealer licenses without indication of the cause of the delay. "

Tesla said the developments have impeded their growth plans, an issue that they claim affects citizens in the state because with Tesla handicapped, the company would not be able to "create new jobs or participate in New Jersey's economic revival."

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