Tesla to hold forum in Westport Monday

A publicity photograph of the Tesla Model S P85D.

WESTPORT — The fight to sell Teslas directly to customers continues.

The company is holding a forum with local leaders Monday in Westport to talk about the potential economic opportunities that selling their cars in Connecticut could create.

State law forbids Tesla to sell cars in their gallery in Greenwich directly to customers.

The  forum is set for 6 p.m.at the Dragone Classic Motorcars showroom, 176 Post Road West in Westport.

DMV last month ordered Tesla to “cease all business functions” in Greenwich, but a revised order released Thursday puts that action on hold pending an appeal.

State law prevents a vehicle manufacturer from being a retailer. Tesla is lobbying legislators to change the law, allowing it to open retail locations.

The Connecticut Automotive Retail Association opposes Tesla’s efforts, saying the company should participate in the existing franchise system. The association filed a petition with DMV last summer, accusing Tesla of conducting direct sales.

While customers use personal computers to order a vehicle, DMV says the purchase practice is identical to a licensed dealership.