Tesla steers clear of the forecourt

Tesla is now selling its electric cars direct to the public through high street and shopping centre outlets.

Its decision to move away from the traditional forecourt route to market continues an industry trend, with Hyundai, Audi and BMW also now selling electric cars direct to the public.

To help motor retailers manage this new influx of sales models, Institute of Motor Industry (IMI) is launching IMI Accreditation in customer service and management.

This accreditation will act as a guarantee of quality from the workshop to the showroom, and instill confidence in the employee, their employer and the customer.

IMI CEO, Steve Nash, said, ‘The goalposts are moving and it’s clear that we will see a much wider variety of sales models in the future.

‘This requires staff who are knowledgeable, informed and adaptable. Our accreditations are aimed at assessing and developing these core skills; preparing people for today and whatever comes in the future.’

One advantage of selling direct to the public is fixed pricing.

‘With fixed pricing, the idea is that it’s transparent,’ a Tesla spokesperson said. ‘People don’t feel like they need to go into battle or brush up on their negotiation skills before they come into a store. They can spend that time researching electric vehicles or looking at reviews instead.

‘You don’t haggle for a handbag, so why should you haggle for a car? It’s a different frame of mind. Most transactions are fixed price, particularly in the UK, so it’s what most people experience on day-to-day basis.’