What is a Tesla Gallery?
Thinking about purchasing an electric vehicle from Tesla Motors? Or maybe you want to learn more about the American automaker that is changing the way we buy vehicles. Rather than driving to a local dealership, instead you’ll be heading over to one of the Tesla galleries or stores that are opening coast-to-coast.
At Ventura Collision Center, we are intrigued about the new, exciting vehicles that come out literally every week and we see Teslas in Ventura, CA on occasion. Now the carmaker is changing the ways they're selling cars and the Tesla Gallery in an integral part of that.
Step inside a Tesla showroom and you’ll find a clean, modern design in a lounge-like environment with small tables and high stools. On the wall, a flat-screen television displays the latest Tesla videos, touchscreens provide information about products, and t-shirts, hats and other branded items are usually available for purchase.
Front and center, potential buyers will find Tesla’s premium Model S sedan or Model X sports utility vehicle on display—often both.
As the only automaker that sells directly to consumers through its owns stores and online, Tesla does not operate or sell at any franchised dealerships.
Based in Palo Alto, California, Tesla has opened more than 250 galleries and stores since being founded in 2003. The main difference between the two is that galleries are mainly in states where Tesla is not yet allowed to sell vehicles due to direct sales issues. In galleries, Tesla doesn’t employ salespeople. Instead, they have product specialists who focus on educating future owners about Tesla and electric vehicle ownership. The states that restrict Tesla sales include Connecticut, Michigan, Texas and Utah.
Although customers are unable to purchase a vehicle in a gallery, and test-drives are not always available, those interested can learn about Tesla and then place their order online.
CEO Elon Musk often talked about wanting to change the car buying experience and provide showrooms where potential owners can learn about the technology. They are usually located in high-traffic areas, such as the Houston Galleria in Texas and the Bethesda-Montgomery Mall in Maryland.
In June 2016, Tesla opened its first gallery in a Nordstrom at The Grove shopping center in Los Angeles. Later that year, two other Nordstroms set aside space for galleries, one in Charlotte, North Carolina, and another in the Summerset Collection in Troy, Michigan. Due to a Michigan law that restricts vehicle sales to franchised dealers, customers aren’t allowed to purchase a vehicle there. However, product specialists are on-hand to share information about owning an electric vehicle.
Tesla plans to open additional showrooms to educate consumers and deliver the hands-on service they pride themselves on.
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Sources: Tesla, CNN and AOL