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Tesla Tests The Limits Of Michigan Law With New Open Showroom

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Tesla Tests The Limits Of Michigan Law With New Open Showroom
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Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) took a step closer to Michigan's red tape this week. The electric car maker has opened a showroom inside a Nordstrom, Inc. (NYSE: JWN) department store in Troy, just 17 miles outside of the motor city, pushing Michigan's legislative boundaries keeping it from selling vehicles directly to consumers.

The showroom is part of an ongoing and expanding partnership between two companies; Tesla has existing galleries inside of Nordstrom locations in Los Angeles and Charlotte, North Carolina.

To reinforce that the showroom operates as a marketing entity rather than a sales floor, the location displays a number of “Not For Sale” signs around the vehicles, according to an article published by Electrek earlier Friday.

“While it’s unlikely that the state can do something to stop Tesla at this location since it amounts to the company having an advertising space, it certainly pushes the boundaries of the law in Michigan,” wrote Electrek editor Fred Lambert.

The battle between the home state of the Big Three and Tesla over direct-to-consumer selling dates back over three years, but tensions rose in September with the Michigan Secretary of State’s rejection of Tesla’s dealership license application and Tesla’s subsequent filing of a lawsuit, to “vindicate its rights under the United States Constitution to sell and service its critically-acclaimed, all-electric vehicles at Tesla-owned facilities in the State of Michigan.”

At the time of writing, the office of Michigan Secretary of State Ruth Johnson was unaware of the Nordstrom showroom and unable to comment. 

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