NJ CAR filed a lawsuit on September 19, 2019 against the State of New Jersey for failing to hold Tesla accountable to the consumer protection laws and motor vehicle dealer licensing regulations designed to protect New Jersey consumers and ensure fair competition in the motor vehicle marketplace.
NJ CAR has spent decades advocating for firm and fair rules that create a level playing field and promote a competitive marketplace that benefits consumers and honest business owners. The Coalition goes to great lengths to train dealers about their responsibilities under the law and we expect all new car dealers to operate at the highest standards.
Tesla seems to feel the rules don’t apply to them. As outlined in the lawsuit, Tesla operates at least one illegal location, employs dishonest bait and switch tactics, and repeatedly violates other consumer protection laws with impunity. In particular, Tesla presents contradictory and unlawful advertising about its Autopilot feature and includes a wide variety of prohibited violations in their website advertising.
NJ CAR has attempted to address these concerns on multiple occasions for more than a year, with the hopes of not having to resort to litigation, but the State of New Jersey has repeatedly failed to act. If any of New Jersey’s 510+ neighborhood new car dealerships committed the violations that Tesla has, the State would take action against them. Why is Tesla not held to the same standard?
Tesla’s reckless, and often unlawful, business practices put consumers at risk and place local dealers at a competitive disadvantage. No single company, especially a Wall Street- backed titan like Tesla, should be given special treatment at the expense of the 510+ main street neighborhood new car dealers in New Jersey. Anyone in the business of selling motor vehicle should be required to play by the same rules.
NJ CAR will keep dealers informed of any developments regarding the pending litigation against the State of New Jersey.