Your #1 source for auto industry news and content

Mississippi Gov. signs bill limiting how EV manufacturers can sell

The new rule prohibits automakers from owning, running, or controlling their own dealerships.

A bill from Mississippi that prohibits EV manufacturers from selling their vehicles directly to consumers instead of through franchised dealers has been made law.

The measure, which had been adopted by the Legislature earlier in the month, was signed by Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves on March 14. The new rule prohibits automakers from owning, running, or controlling their own dealerships, but it makes an exception for a Tesla outlet that already exists in the state. 

Reeves said that the bill will defend Mississippi’s auto dealers. “Almost 200 little enterprises in towns all around our state are looking for guarantees that giant manufacturers won’t just wipe them out. On March 14, Reeves posted on Facebook following the signing of House Bill 401. “I also understand that this industry will inevitably see innovation. New businesses with novel business models also arise as a result of innovation. In a market that is constantly evolving, I am dedicated to finding long-term solutions. I’m looking forward to continuing to collaborate with all stakeholders to achieve that.”

The Mississippi Automotive Dealers Association claims that the law grandfathers in an existing Tesla site. The association’s president, Marty Milstead, called it “gratifying to know that Mississippi lawmakers acknowledged the necessity of a robust dealership network that we have in our state.” Adding, “In Mississippi, all manufacturers are subject to the same set of rules.”

Startup EV producers like Rivian and Lucid, which adopt Tesla’s strategy of selling cars directly to customers instead of through a franchised dealership network, have pushed for exceptions to dealer franchise restrictions in recent years to support their business model. According to Rivian, “HB 401’s passing and signature is a setback for both Mississippi’s economy and residents in terms of consumer choice and sends Mississippi in the wrong path.”

Stay up to date on exclusive content from CBT News by following us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.

Don’t miss out! Subscribe to our free newsletter to receive all the latest news, insight and trends impacting the automotive industry.

CBT News is part of the JBF Business Media family.

Jaelyn Campbell
Jaelyn Campbell
Jaelyn Campbell is a staff writer/reporter for CBT News. She is a recent honors cum laude graduate with a BFA in Mass Media from Valdosta State University. Jaelyn is an enthusiastic creator with more than four years of experience in corporate communications, editing, broadcasting, and writing. Her articles in The Spectator, her hometown newspaper, changed how people perceive virtual reality. She connects her readers to the facts while providing them a voice to understand the challenges of being an entrepreneur in the digital world.

Related Articles

Manufacturers In This Article

More Manufacturer News

Latest Articles

From our Publishing Partners