Tesla, the automotive company known for, among other things, disrupting the industry’s dealership model by selling directly to consumers, opened its Ann Arbor retail showroom in recent weeks, as quietly as its electric motors.
Along with its service center, which opened last fall, the showroom is located at the Jackson Rd. site of the former Bel-Mark Lanes, which closed last spring after forty-six years to make way for a comprehensive remodeling. The 35,000-square-foot building on 4.8 acres sold for $8.5 million in January 2022 to an Ohio-based developer, which rebuilt and sold it for $22.5 million four months later, per Scio Township property records.
No inventory for purchase was visible on a recent visit. In fact, the showroom door was locked a few minutes after the listed opening time. Examples of the Models X, Y, and 3 were apparent through the glass, but no staff.
Manager Adam Cichy, reached in person at the service center, declined all questions save to confirm a speculative pronunciation of his name (“Chi chi”), citing corporate policy. Questions about the facility and its offerings posed to the Tesla press email address he suggested went unanswered.
A potential customer inquiring by a more traditional channel may learn, however, that one Model X and one Model Y are currently available for demo drives, best arranged by scheduling online, where any eventual vehicle orders are placed.
Tesla (retail showroom), 3530 Jackson Rd. (734) 887–7853. Mon.–Sat. 10 a.m.–7 p.m., closed Sun. tesla.com