Tesla is expanding its virtual sales strategy with remote test drive locations in Europe, where it opened its first remote test drive hub in Sweden.

According to a tweet posted on Tesla Europe’s Twitter account, customers can book an appointment online on the company’s official website, then call a phone number when they’ve arrived at the hub. A representative will remotely unlock the chosen vehicle and walk the customer through the whole process, after which a 30-minute test drive can begin – without a Tesla rep in the car.

This enables the American EV maker to offer test drives with very few staff on-site, which have to make sure the cars are charged and cleaned. But there’s also the issue of potentially misbehaving customers that may damage the vehicles because they’re unattended.


Tesla has been gradually implementing a new sales strategy in the last few years in the United States, where it’s moving away from high-rent locations like malls and shopping centres to delivery centres that are located in car parks and other low-rent facilities. Also, the company is shifting from assigning advisors at local stores towards assigning virtual sales advisers that aren’t assigned to any specific location but can be reached remotely.

Now, the American carmaker is expanding this strategy in Europe in a bid to boost online sales and further cut operating costs.

In January, Tesla racked up nearly 50,000 new registrations in the United States, 19,000 more than BMW managed to deliver and more than double what Mercedes-Benz achieved in the luxury car segment. In Europe however, it’s a different story, with Tesla selling a little over 9,000 EVs in the first month of the year, while Mercedes-Benz moved over 50,000 cars and BMW delivered 45,000 vehicles.

So maybe this new strategy will help Tesla sell more cars on the Old Continent, but only time will tell if it’s going to be a winning proposition.