Tesla has decided not to close all of its stores. Last month, CEO Elon Musk announced that Tesla would be shutting down its retail stores and moving to online-only sales in order to pass the savings along to our customers.
Over the past two weeks, the company has been evaluating every single Tesla retail location, and decided to keep significantly more stores open than previously announced as it continues to evaluate them over the course of several months.
When Tesla recently closed 10% of sales locations, they selected stores that didn’t invite the natural foot traffic stores have always been designed for. These are stores that would have closed anyway, even if in-store sales made up the entire sales model. A few stores in high visibility locations that were closed due to low throughput will be reopened, but with a smaller Tesla crew. In addition, there are another 20% of locations that are under review, and depending on their effectiveness over the next few months, some will be closed and some will remain open.
Many Tesla stores were located in high end malls and would have had difficulty ending their leases.
As a result of keeping significantly more stores open, Tesla said it will need to raise vehicle prices by about 3% on average worldwide. In other words, since it will only close about half as many stores, the cost savings are therefore only about half.
Potential Tesla owners will have a week to place their order before prices rise, so current prices are valid until March 18th. There will be no price increase to the $35,000 Model 3. The price increases will only apply to the more expensive variants of Model 3, as well as Model S and X.