FTC to Host Public Workshop Examining the U.S. Auto Distribution System Workshop Will Explore Competition, State Regulations, and Emerging Trends in the Industry, Project No. P131202
First of all, I want to thank the FTC for recognizing that something is definitely wrong with the present state of being. None of the actions from the dealership associations make sense to me, merely a consumer who wants the right to buy what I want to buy from a company that fulfills my needs. I've bought 2 EV's in the past 2 years, one from a manufacturer direct company, and the other from a dealership. I hate shopping, particularly for cars- so these experiences probably had more impact on me than others. First off- I am not sure what it is that dealerships are supposed to add to the car buying experience (unless upset stomach and headaches are considered added value). ALL the regular dealerships tried to talk me OUT OF GETTING an EV, though I made it clear that it is what I was there for. When I finally did get a CPO EV from a dealership- it wasn't from my local dealer- so, I had to fight to have simple problems taken care of under the warranty. My other EV was from a manufacturer run store, and the experience was (and remains phenomenal), even when I need a service 4,000 miles away from home. To me this feels like the abused becoming the abuser. The federal government stepped in to protect dealerships from being abused (I.e. dealership doing all the leg work then getting undercut by corporate sales)- now they are the bullies trying to manipulate the system in such a way that they stifle outside corporations (not from their own manufacturers) from competing with them... and all in the name of representing the consumer. Really? We were very fortunate to live in Florida, and only 10 miles from a Tesla store, making the [not private franchise] experience seamless, but we travel around the U.S. quite a bit and I have been shocked by the hoops that people have to jump through in some areas, just to buy the car they want. It is appalling... embarrassing to see this kind of bullying being permitted. In all fairness, I now do understand why the dealerships are so nervous. Look how much progress Tesla was able to make despite the dealership resistance. It probably is easier to try to eliminate the Tesla challenge than to take on the elevated competition. It seems, however, that corporate and independent franchise businesses can coexist so long as both provide the same level of quality.