Deal Allows Tesla To Continue Selling Cars In Ohio

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UPDATED: Wednesday March 26, 2014 9:05 AM

Automaker Tesla will be allowed to continue selling cars in Columbus.

As debate between traditional car dealerships and Tesla continues across the country, Ohio lawmakers were debating an outright ban on the direct-sale car company.

At issue is whether the Tesla sales model hurts consumers by limiting their ability to shop around, or as Tesla contends, provides an all new way of directly buying your car.

"We have developed novel technology and we're packaging it in a beautiful car," said Diarmuid O'Connell, a Tesla Motors Vice President.

Tesla opened its location in Easton last December after the Kasich administration issued a license allowing them to do so.

But the car industry wasn't happy.

"We've invested hundreds of millions of dollars in our businesses, in our employees 50,000 strong and within the community's where our dealerships are located," said Joe Cannon of the Ohio Automobile Dealers Association.

Cannon says Tesla's sales model creates unfair competition with over 800 franchised car dealers across Ohio.

Tuesday night, all sides agreed to a compromise approved by a senate committee.

Tesla will be allowed to keep its stores at Easton and in Cincinnati.

In addition, Tesla may open a planned store in the Cleveland area.

In exchange, Tesla will not be allowed to open any other locations in Ohio.

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