Tesla sues Michigan over law prohibiting direct sales

Let the legal battle between the heart of the auto industry and Elon Musk begin.

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Roberto Baldwin, Engadget
Roberto Baldwin, Engadget
Tesla is suing the home of the auto industry. The electric car manufacturer started litigation against Michigan Governor Rick Snyder today over a law that prohibits the automaker's direct-sale model in the state, according to a report from Reuters. This comes after two years of trying to get the legislation changed via other methods.

Last year, the company made its first in-state acquisition, a tool and die shop in Grand Rapids (roughly 150 miles west of Detroit), but apparently that wasn't enough to curry favor with the powers that be. Michigan is among Connecticut, Texas and Utah in terms of states where Tesla can't sell cars directly to consumers.

"Unfortunately, the local auto dealers and local manufacturers have made clear that they oppose any law that would allow Tesla to operate in Michigan," a statement reads. "As one leading legislator told Tesla: the local auto dealers do not want you here. The local manufacturers do not want you here. So you're not going to be here."

The statement also says that lawmakers won't even hold a hearing to debate the current legislation, despite Snyder wanting to make it a "top priority" during his tenure. Maybe if Musk and Co. had made a giant campaign contribution or offered to look the other way while Snyder allowed the city of Flint's water system to be poisoned, the self-proclaimed "tough nerd" would've been more open to changing the law. Just an idea.

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