Elon Musk Not Ready to Take No Direct Sales For An Answer

Doron Levin says despite recent set backs in Virginia to Tesla's direct-to-buyers sales model, Elon Musk won't give up that easily.

Published: 01-May-2013

RICHMOND -- The always combative Elon Musk lost a round in his latest bid to sidestep the dealer-franchise system for selling vehicles. He may be down, but he's not out.

Musk, founder and chief executive officer of Tesla (TSLA), was rebuffed last week after the electric-car manufacturer applied to open a company-owned store in Virginia. The state's Department of Motor Vehicles denied the application in the face of opposition by automobile franchisees in that state.

Dealers throughout the U.S. have been a politically active and powerful group that oppose company-owned stores or selling directly to consumers over the Internet. Dealers have been successful in state legislatures to help frame laws that protect their longtime franchises, which operate as independent businesses.

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