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CT car dealers push back on ‘Tesla bill’

Figures in the state’s car dealership industry are once again taking aim at a bill that would permit electric vehicle manufacturers to sell their cars directly to consumers, arguing the proposal will result in fewer protections for buyers and undercut local businesses.

The bill, known as SB 127, is the latest in a series of attempts to at least partially roll back some aspects of the state’s dealer franchise law, which requires car companies to sell through franchised dealers. Lawmakers put forward a direct sales proposal every year between 2015 and 2019, but each time it stalled in the General Assembly.

Within Connecticut’s car dealership sector, the reappearing legislation has come to be known as the “Tesla bill,” after California-based electric vehicle maker Tesla Inc. Tesla has backed similar legislation in states throughout the country in an effort to expand its direct sales model and, as the world’s largest electric

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