Tesla reveals new details on pricing and product options for homeowners.
We’ve been waiting for pricing details for the Tesla sunroof since last year. They are finally available.
Tesla officially began taking orders for its highly anticipated solar roof system today. Since the product’s public launch last fall, Elon Musk has been giving little details about warranties and performance, but hasn’t said anything about how much consumers can expect to pay.
Tesla now has a website that allows owners to calculate how much it will cost. Here are the most important details we know of so far.
Musk: “It’s a better product at a slightly better price”
According to Tesla, the product will cost $ 21.85 per square foot for the average American home, making it competitive with standard tile, metal or slate roofs. You can read more about Tesla’s assumptions here.
In a conference call with reporters, Musk said that a solar roof covering 40 percent of the average-size American home would generate 10 to 20 percent more electricity than a standard solar system.
“It’s a better product at a slightly better price,” Musk said, comparing the product to conventional roofs.
“It’s the most affordable roof you can buy,” said Peter Rive, SolarCity’s chief technology officer, during the call.
In a blog post, Tesla provided a cost comparison to other roofing options: “As shown in the graph below, the cost of our non-solar shingles is comparable to that of regular roofing tiles. Although the cost of our Solar shingles is more expensive at first, it can be more than offset by the value of the energy the shingles produce. In many cases, the reduction in a home’s electricity bill will eventually outweigh the cost of the roof. ” .
What is the product, exactly?
It’s a fully integrated system: tempered glass solar panels, power electronics, and an “all-inclusive contract” for financing and maintenance. Oh, and the guarantee is “infinite”. For real.
“We offer the best warranty in the industry – the life of your home or infinity, whichever comes first,” the company wrote.
Musk said the roofing contract would be structured “similar to how we sell cars.”
But here’s an important caveat about the comprehensive nature of the contract: “Your solar roof’s estimated cost includes materials, installation, and removal of your old roof. Additional taxes, permit fees, and construction costs, such as significant structural improvements. , replacement of gutters or skylights is not included. ”
According to Tesla, the roof is “three times stronger than standard tiles” and one third the weight of a normal tile.
As Musk hinted on Twitter this morning, Tesla will offer smooth gray glass tile and black textured glass tile. Slate glass and Tuscan tiles will be available in six to nine months.
Musk said Tesla expects consumers to cover 40 percent of their roof with solar tiles on average. The calculator allows customers to price their own roof with up to 70 percent solar shingles.
Tesla wants to upsell you batteries
If you calculate the price of your house, Tesla will encourage you to add a Powerwall. That will add another $ 7,000 to the system.
“We recommend that each solar roof be installed with a Powerwall battery to allow you to use more solar energy than your roof produces and keep your home running during a grid outage. In states that do not have net energy metering policies, we estimate and recommend a series of Powerwalls that will allow you to obtain the maximum benefit from the energy that your solar roof produces. ”
It’s manufactured in America
Tesla plans to manufacture the entire system in Buffalo, New York, with cells made by Panasonic. Peter Rive, SolarCity’s chief technology officer, said the solar tile’s efficiency was equivalent to that of a standard solar PV module.
JB Straubel, Tesla’s chief technology officer, said it is “a very different approach to making solar modules.” He added that the solar division had “relied heavily” on the Tesla team, particularly when it came to developing electrical connectors.
Musk said the strong tempered glass makes shipping easier than conventional tiles. And because the product weighs a third, the shipping cost is also much lower. “We save on logistics and breakages,” he said.
Installations start this summer in California
It will cost you $ 1,000 to reserve a system. Installations will be done on a first come, first serve basis.
“Basically, we’re going to custom design the sunroof system for one homeowner,” Rive said of the systems.
An important note: the product will initially only be available to California homeowners. Tesla will expand to other states in the future, according to the lawsuit.
“Installations will begin in June, beginning with California and expanding to additional markets over time. When the Solar Roof is rolled out in a particular market, Solar Roof customers will be installed based on when the order was placed,” Tesla wrote .
The installations will begin this summer. More aesthetically attractive options will be launched in 2018.
We will have much more analysis on the value to consumers, and how Tesla plans to integrate the product into its sales model, in future coverage.