Drivers who bought vehicles from another person have gotten an unwelcome surprise during the last two months – they can’t get the license plates and registration they need to drive them, due to the coronavirus closing motor vehicle agencies.
Drivers who’ve bought a vehicle from a private owner found out that registering their new ride requires an in-person transaction at motor vehicle agencies. But state Motor Vehicle Commission agencies were closed on March 16 to reduce exposure to COVID-19.
The problem is, they’ve already gotten special treatment
Tesla Motors, the manufacturer and retailer of electric powered cars, boasts on its website that it is “redefining the way cars are sold.”
They’ve been selling new cars in an unconventional way in New Jersey for one, two or four years, depending on who is telling the truth. They have a problem now, because the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission suddenly adopted what Tesla is calling a “new rule” that is consistent with decades old law allowing only franchised new car dealerships to sell new cars in New Jersey.
Instead of visiting a new car dealership where you test drive a car, haggle with a salesperson, wait for the salesperson to come back from pretending to talk to his/her manager, make a deal, get passed off to the business manager who bumps your interest rate, tries to sell you undercoating, credit insurance and an extended warranty and then wait a while longer to drive home in your new car, you can’t buy a car at Tesla’s two stores in New Jersey.
Tesla’s New Jersey stores are inside the Short Hills Mall in Short Hills and the Garden State Plaza Mall in Paramus. You can’t get your new electric car at one of those stores. You can’t even order it at the store. You can only look at a car and talk about it. If you want to buy one, you have to order it online and wait for it to be built in California before you take delivery. If you want to test drive one, you have to an request an appointment online. It might take a day or two for a representative to get back to you with an appointment. Test drives and new car deliveries are done out of the company’s service facility in Springfield.