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New Law Bans 'Direct To Consumer' Car Sales In Michigan

Michigan Public Radio Network

Snyder signs bill cementing ban on Tesla sales in Michigan

Tesla Motors, Inc. and other auto manufacturers will not be allowed to sell their vehicles directly to customers in Michigan. That's under a new law signed by Governor Rick Snyder on Tuesday.

Snyder says that part of the new law doesn't "fundamentally" change anything. He says it simply strengthens an existing law that already bans auto manufacturers from selling directly to consumers.

"Given that it didn't change existing law and the strong support from the Legislature, I believe it was appropriate to sign it," Snyder said in a short video explaining his decision to sign the bill into law.

The governor says Tesla's business model of selling its electric cars directly to consumers - not through franchised dealers - was already banned in Michigan under existing law.

But Snyder says lawmakers should revisit that law.

"I would be open, and actually encourage a discussion to make sure Michigan is viewed as a state that's open to products and services from all over the globe," he said. "And I hope they'll take up that concern and have a discussion in the future about what could be the best answers from Michigan's citizens."

Snyder says that discussion could happen as soon as the Legislature returns after the November election for its "lame duck" session.