Buying an EV is one thing, being able to drive it beyond city limits another...
If Tesla were in an Auto mall the only customers that would walk in would be someone already educated about electric cars and interested in hearing about them. Though an automall might get more traffic than the LA store does now. The Newport store (ex-Rolls Royce dealer) probably gets some one-stop Ferrari-Tesla shoppers.
The world loves to be deceived.
Tesla's avoidance of the traditional use of dealers is giving them the flexibility to evolve their marketing/sales strategy. If they had gone with dealers, they would've been stuck with the same old way that everyone else markets and sells cars. Owning the stores, they can change things relatively quickly, as needed.
You got it! I thought of that just as I was posting.
Elon stated that he had to own Tesla (=be CEO) in order to control everything. Basically the same here.
I guess I cannot grasp the concept of purchasing a car the way I would purchase a TV or Computer. Most of the people who will be buying these cars are not the casual mall shopper but rather individuals who have done research and knows what they want. This may change over time, but right now there is no doubt in my mind that the vast majority of people who buy these cars, do a ton of research beforehand. If this is the type of consumer that are buying these cars, is it necessary to lease expensive shop space where 90% of the people who come through the doors are not your customer? Heck I think this strategy may help Chevy and Nissan, people will go into Tesla's showroom, learn about ev's, hop online and go and buy a cheaper electric car. Its good for the cause I guess, but when you are selling 60-100k cars instead of 2k computers or 400 dollar ipods I think the type of consumer that you are trying to attract is different than the ones that shop at malls. If Tesla was selling Tata Nano's or Vespa's this concept may work but at that price point I am not sure how much of an increase in sales this type of store concept will add over the traditional model. People tend to seek these cars out (like any other high end marque). This is why Rolls Royce moved from that space to over by the airport, they realized that visibility is not necessary, the individuals that want that particular car will go and seek it regardless of where the dealership is located. Some mighty risky moves Tesla is making! I could understand implementing this later on, they could have very easily kept their existing stores (and added new locations similar to what they have now in new markets), and just leased nearby warehouse space for the cars/service.
Last edited by smoothoperator; 11-21-2011 at 10:29 PM.
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