Recent reports have indicated that Tesla is working with American Indian organizations to bypass a ban on direct-to-consumer automobile sales in New Mexico. In this light, Tesla has started the construction of its second store on Santa Ana Pueblo land. The facility is expected to open in May 2023.
The new Tesla facility was announced by tribal and company officials Friday. To be able to sell, maintain, and deliver Tesla vehicles to customers in the area, the tribe’s commercial arm, Tamaya Ventures, has partnered with the electric vehicle manufacturer, according to the Albuquerque Journal.
Overall, the upcoming facility would span 35,000 square feet and occupy four acres of land, which would make it larger than the company’s first facility in the area. A Supercharger station would also be built on the site.
As recognized sovereign tribes, Santa Ana and Nambé Pueblo, where Tesla launched its first New Mexico store in 2021, are exempt from state regulations. This allows the company to bypass the state’s direct sales ban for its electric vehicles, which are not sold through a dealership network.
Tesla expects to offer a good number of jobs for its New Mexico facility. The company would be trading a small group of tribal members to serve as service technicians, but according to Tenorio, both tribal members and others in neighboring areas would have jobs thanks to the store, according to Automotive News.
This is not the first time that the pueblo has partnered with Tesla for a project. Tesla leased a warehouse from Santa Ana Pueblo in April 2021 to utilize for its mobile repair team. Sanchez also noted that Tesla approached the pueblo about deepening their collaboration on the new project last year and that work on the project has been ongoing ever since.