BUSINESS & ECONOMY

Tesla-inspired direct sales bill signed into law

Panasonic North America CTO Todd Rytting poses with a Tesla Model S. - (AARON HOUSTON)

Panasonic North America CTO Todd Rytting poses with a Tesla Model S. – (AARON HOUSTON)

By Andrew George for NJBIZ

A bill that would allow zero-emission vehicle manufacturers to directly buy from or sell to consumers was signed into law Wednesday by Gov. Chris Christie.

The law is essentially limited to American electric carmaker Tesla, which uses a direct-sales business model, as it only covers zero-emission vehicle manufacturers that were licensed by the state Motor Vehicle Commission as of Jan. 1, 2014.

A need for the bill arose after the MVC ruled against Tesla last year, stipulating that automobiles needed to be sold through franchises under a traditional dealership model. Criticism was launched at both the MVC and the Christie administration for what many argued to be a bow to special interest groups.

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