Georgia still has dealer-friendly laws that prohibit factory direct-to-consumer sales. When EV start-up Rivian asked for a direct-sales exemption, similar to one granted to Tesla in 2015, the lawmakers refused. Since then, the company said it would spend $5B to build a massive auto plant outside Atlanta, creating 7,500 jobs in the peach state.
Round 2? Some say the timing of Rivian's investment, which is the largest in GA's history, is suspect. Lawmakers in the state are looking at three bills that may allow new-line EV makers to sell directly to consumers with much lobbying by Rivian. About half of US states allow direct auto sales under certain circumstances, with seven more holding exceptions and another ten considering bills that would make direct sales permitted to all.
Telling it like it is - Considering the speed at which the market and policy can move, dealers that create raving fans in their communities now may have a distinct advantage in the not-too-distant future.