A fight between Tesla motors and car dealers is heating up across the country.
Some states are now banning the sales of Tesla within their boundaries entirely.
And it's a debate that could affect how everyone buys cars in the future.
Dealership Model Threatened
This is how we've bought new cars for generations: You go to a dealer, choose a model, then sit down and start haggling.
But this is how Tesla wants us to buy cars: Visiting a shopping mall storefront, then purchasing it direct from the company.
Some car buyers like David Paloda think its a great idea.
"I think its a revolutionary way to sell cars," he said."Why have an extra step in the chain?"
So Tesla is bypassing franchise car dealers, which the electric car company claims would increase costs.
Tesla Vice President Diarurd O'connor said "if we have to do a franchise, we'd be forced into doing it through a franchise dealer, and we don't think that's appropriate, we don't think that's effective. I'm not sure that's the role of government, to prescribe a business model in the free market."
Problem is Tesla is threatening to upend a century old way of selling cars. Dealerships across the country are worried this will open a pandoras box.
Charlie Howard of the Auto Dealers Association says franchise dealers are a major part of their communities.
He says direct auto sales could threaten millions of dollars in local sales tax, and jobs of thousands of local workers. He said it is not like buying a book off Amazon.com.
"These are significant jobs threatened, good paying jobs. The average dealership has 62 employees."
But Tesla feels in a free country car buyers should have the option of buying direct from the manufacturer if they want.
States Debate New Laws
Arizona, New Jersey, Virginia, and Texas have taken the most severe steps, While Ohio and Colorado have recently placed limits on Tesla sales.
Ohio will allow Tesla to continue selling from storefronts in Cincinnati, Cleveland, and Columbus, but will not allow any additional stores.
So can you buy directly from a car manufacturer? For now, for the most part, the answer remains no.
As always don't waste your money.
Don't Waste Your Money is a registered trademark of the EW Scripps Co.
"Like" John Matarese on Facebook
Follow John on Twitter (@JohnMatarese)