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Tesla pumps brakes on plan to shutter all stores

by Drew Johnson

The cost of keeping some stores open will be a 3 percent price hike.

Tesla announced on Sunday that it is reversing course on a plan to close all of its brick and mortar retail locations. As a result of that decision, the company says it will have to increases prices on most of its models.

In late February Tesla boldly stated it would be closing its physical retail location in favor of an online ordering system. Tesla touted that move as a time and money saver, with the company passing on a 6 percent savings to the buying customer.

But Tesla says it has been evaluating that decision over the last two weeks and has decided it would be beneficial to keep some physical stores open. Tesla hasn't announced how many stores will remain open, but the company says it will be reopening "high visibility locations that were closed due to low throughput,” along with a handful of other stores that are currently being evaluated for effectiveness.

In order to support those retail locations, Tesla will raise prices by about 3 percent across the board. The only exception to the price hike will be the entry-level $35,000 Model 3; all other models, including higher-end versions of the Model 3, will be subject to the new pricing structure.

The price bump is set to go into effect on March 18, so shoppers still have a week to lock in a Tesla at current prices.

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