Why Rivian Won’t Sell Its Electric Trucks Through a Dealership

Lawmakers in Colorado may allow any electric vehicle to be sold directly to customers, and Rivian hopes other states follow that lead

As Rivian prepares to offer its electric trucks and SUVs for sale, there’s one thing the company doesn’t plan on doing: opening dealerships.

Colorado lawmakers are considering a bill that would carve out an exemption for electric vehicle sales from the state’s dealership franchise law, Automotive News reports. The bipartisan-supported bill would allow any EV—including those made by established companies like General Motors or Ford—to be sold directly to consumers, skipping over the traditional dealership chain.

That would include Rivian, an exciting newcomer in the EV space that’s captured headlines for its stylish truck and SUV designs and a deal to build vehicles for Lincoln. But like Tesla before it, Rivian needs states like Colorado to loosen strict franchise laws in order to go direct to buyers.

“We believe that our customers are best served and have the most seamless experience by running that [sales and service] process,” said Rivian Vice President of Public Policy James Chen in a phone interview with The Drive. “We are not going to a franchised dealer system—period.”

Washington had a similar bill come up, but…

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