Tesla launches its insurance in Texas, but it still can’t sell its cars directly in the state

Credit: tesla.cybertruck/Instagram

True to Elon Musk’s recent comments, Tesla Insurance has been launched in Texas. The company notes that its in-house insurance service would allow owners to get “competitive rates” in as little as one minute. These rates are determined by Tesla through an evaluation of drivers’ real-time behavior on the road. 

Interestingly enough, the company’s Safety Score system takes center stage in its insurance service’s Texas expansion. When they sign up for the service, Tesla owners are reminded of the factors that affect their Safety Score. The company also noted that each new Tesla Insurance customer would be starting with a Safety Score of 90. Their savings would largely depend on their safety ratings. 

“Tesla Insurance uses real-time data to calculate potential savings o your premium based on a personalized Safety Score. View your driving data in your Tesla mobile app after your first trip. Each customer starts with a score of 90. You will be notified 30 days before any changes to your premium. The higher your Safety Score, the more you save on Tesla Insurance. The majority of Tesla Drivers are estimated to have a Safety Score of 80 or higher,” the company noted. 

Using the Safety Score system would likely make Tesla Insurance quite reasonable for electric vehicle owners in Texas. Teslas, after all, have been known to get unreasonably high rates with conventional vehicle insurance providers. Tapping into the real-time data provided by the Safety Score system would then allow Tesla to ensure that its rates are as fair and competitive as possible. 

Interestingly enough, Tesla ended up getting approval to launch its in-house insurance service in Texas even before the company was able to secure the necessary permissions to sell its vehicles directly to customers in the state. Texas state law still bans car companies such as Tesla from directly selling to customers. Instead, automakers are required to sell their vehicles through independently owned car dealerships, a business model that is not adopted by Tesla, or newcomers like Rivian and Lucid, for that matter. 

Earlier this year, Texas lawmakers decided not to pass legislation that would allow carmakers to adopt a direct sales model in the state. What is quite unfortunate was that the Texas lawmakers who could change these regulations only meet for 140 days every other year. This means that their next scheduled meeting would be around 2023. By then, Gigafactory Texas would already be in operation for over a year, considering that the massive facility is set see trial Model Y production around the end of 2021. 

Texas residents could still buy Teslas, just not through any of the company’s facilities in the state. Instead, Texans could purchase Teslas by placing their orders on the company’s website. Residents would then have to drive to other states to acquire a Tesla, or have the necessary paperwork sent to another state for processing. Once this is done, the ordered Tesla could be shipped to one of the company’s service centers in Texas, where the buyer could pick up the vehicle. 

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Simon Alvarez: Simon is a reporter with a passion for electric cars and clean energy. Fascinated by the world envisioned by Elon Musk, he hopes to make it to Mars (at least as a tourist) someday.
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