Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) certainly has an unconventional business model when it comes to selling new cars. The traditional dealership model has been flipped on its head, and this is just for a company that is projecting very modest sales of about 20,000 vehicles in the calendar year. The model of online sales directly to consumers is certainly modern and yes, different – and different has caused auto dealerships to rally their lobbyists in state legislatures around the country. The effort has paid off in North Carolina and Texas, where those states now have laws banning direct-sales of cars and requires new-car sales to be at designated dealerships.
Whether that will stop Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) from selling cars remains to be seen, as Tesla does have a select number of “stores,” as it calls them, plus an active sales website. But having no dealership to which a customer could arrive and test-drive a vehicle, how can Tesla sell cars online? Isn’t a bit risky to buy a car online virtually sight unseen? Well, Tesla may be unconventional, but it isn’t a stupid company. Of course customers need to be able to sit in a Model S, drive it around get the feel of the car before making a $70,000 decision.
Well, for those dads out there in Ohio, Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) is presenting a gift of sorts. Tesla takes a Model S out and provides opportunities for customers to test drive the vehicle in a 15-minute appointment with a Tesla Product Specialist (yep, that is what they’re called) will ride along to answer any questions. The test drive, however, occurs over a pre-determined course that is “designed to highlight the capabilities of (the) Model S.” Until 6 p.m. Eastern Friday and noon to 6 p.m. Eastern Saturday, interested customers can set up an appointment for a test drive online and meet at the Easton Town Center in Columbus. On Father’s Day, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern, test drives will be happening in Dublin, Ohio, at the Tesla Service facility on Tuller Road.
Give us your thoughts on this, dare we say it, unconventional test-drive concept by Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) in the comments section below.