Tesla CEO Elon Musk said he considers building a plant in Texas and make big investments here.
Currently Musk is struggling to win legislation exemption to allow Tesla to sell its EVs directly to customers in Texas. He also said that if Tesla wins the exemption the company will invest more in Texas, but the state’s Automobile Dealers Association opposes the company’s bid to amend the law, according to which new vehicles have to be sold by franchised dealers.
Tesla said that it is willing to invest “tens of millions of dollars” to open more service centers and stores in Texas and is also looking for a plant location, which could be built three years from now. This means thousands of new jobs in the region.
“When we do establish a manufacturing plant outside of California, Texas would be a leading candidate for that,” Musk said.
The automaker has two service and store locations in Texas, in Houston and Austin, but staffers here are not allowed to do any sales activity, share pricing, offer test drives or evaluate cars for warranty work. Musk said that if the restrictions are released Texas would become the second largest market for the automaker, which could sell up to 2,000 vehicles next year in the region.
“If we were allowed to go direct, I think we would make Texas on par with California in terms of emphasis,” Musk said.