When we last left the New York auto dealers and their fight against Tesla Motors, there scene was an uneasy ceasefire. The New York State Assembly and its backers from the Greater New York Automobile Dealers Association said last summer that they would allow the three currently operating Tesla stores to continue operating but would pick up the issue again when the legislature reconvened in early 2014. Well, guess what? That time has come a new bill is being promoted that tries once again to stop the California automaker from selling its electric vehicles in its non-traditional way.
Capital New York says representatives of the state's dealers have met with Governor Andrew Cuomo about the new bill and he apparently said he would sign it if it reaches his desk. The dealers say the bill doesn't target EV companies unfairly and just asks them to play by the same rules as everyone else, which means selling cars through traditional dealerships. Tesla says that traditional dealerships don't work for EVs and currently sells its Model S out of small stores in places like shopping malls.
The dealers say the bill doesn't target EV companies unfairly.
Actor Mark Ruffalo (best known as the Hulk in the recent Avengers movie) tweeted his support, saying that EVs are good for New York and that what the bill is trying to do is akin to stopping Apple from selling its products directly to customers. He also asked his many, many Twitter followers to call and oppose the bills. Tesla is fighting against similar laws and proposals in many other states, including Texas and Ohio. We have asked Tesla for a comment on the new New York legislation and will update this post if we hear back.