Last month, Tesla announced it was opening its first Boston-based store in the Shops at the Prudential Center.
The Prudential Center store is slated to open to the public on Friday. But Tesla also confirmed for Boston.com that it plans to open two other locations in the Greater Boston area. The first store will open next month at the Derby Street Shoppes in Hingham. Tesla is targeting a second store location in Chestnut Hill to open at a future date.
Tesla spokesperson Alexis Georgeson says it makes sense for Tesla to expand its presence in the Boston market.
“People in New England are educated, interested in technology, and have shown a strong demand for the Model S,’’ said Georgeson in a phone interview. “It’s a testament to the strength of the market that we’re expanding so rapidly in the area.’’
When customers visit the store, they will be able to learn more about electronic vehicles and customize their own Model S electric sedan. Customers can even test the Autopilot on a Model S, a feature that allows the car the drive itself.
Tesla does not consider itself a car dealership, instead highlighting advanced electric car technology. Locating the company’s newest stores in shopping centers is key to the company’s commitment to “reinventing’’ the car-buying experience for consumers.
“Traditionally, we put our stores in high foot-traffic locations like malls and shopping centers where we can educate people on electronic vehicle technology,’’ said Georgeson.
She also points out that the location is not the only way the electric carmaker distinguishes itself from conventional car dealers. She says the experience for consumers is low-pressure, does not involve haggling, and can be completed from home if desired.
“We don’t want to create a high-pressure sales environment for people,’’ said Georgeson. “We spend a lot of hands-on time with customers familiarizing them with the vehicles.’’
Tesla’s presence in Massachusetts currently includes stores in Natick and Dedham and a service station in Watertown.
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