Tesla says new law will prohibit direct sales in Louisiana

The Associated Press

BATON ROUGE — Electric car company Tesla says it will be unable to sell cars directly in Louisiana, under a bill Gov. John Bel Edwards signed into law.

Tesla enthusiasts had urged the Democratic governor to veto the legislation, but it was on a list of signed measures released by Edwards’ office Tuesday.

The electric car brand is sold through a direct-to-customer model, rather than the franchise dealership relationships other auto manufacturers use. The bill strips language in law that allows limited exemptions to a Louisiana ban on manufacturer-to-consumer sales.

Tesla claims the new language is an effort by auto dealers to limit competition. The Louisiana Automobile Dealers Association says existing law already prohibited Tesla from operating without dealers.

Tesla cars can still be ordered online.

Senate Bill 107: www.legis.la.gov

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