Tesla unveiled and started taking orders for Powerwall 2, its latest generation of home battery packs, almost a year ago (October 2016). As we reported at the time, the product at that price point was a game changer in the residential energy storage market.
Yet, installations are still very limited in the US today as thousands of reservation holders are still waiting.
Now it looks like Tesla is finally expanding the reach of the highly anticipated product.
The company started expanding installations to more markets, like in Minnesota, where a local solar installer, All Energy Solar, confirmed having installed the first 12 Powerwall 2s in the state.
Brian Allen, co-founder of All Energy Solar, told the local paper:
“Energy storage has been top of mind for a lot of solar energy customers, but cost has always been a driving factor. We’re now to the point where energy storage makes a lot more sense.”
He added that they have 50 more Powerwalls on order to be installed by the end of the year.
And those systems, which are paired with solar arrays and/or used for backup power, are not cheap. All Energy Solar says a new Powerwall can cost up to $10,000 with installation – though homeowners can get a 30 percent federal tax credit.
While Tesla lists a Powerwall 2 for $5,500, they also say that $700 in “supporting hardware” is required and “typical installation cost ranges from $800 to $2,000.”It’s why Tesla is focusing deliveries in markets with high electricity rates and where residential solar has a high penetration rate.
The economics only make sense there for now, but a broader rollout for people who want to use the system mainly for backup power is also expected later.
Furthermore, the company has been guiding “fall 2017”, which starts in just a few weeks, for a production ramp up to start delivering the increasing number of Powerwalls won through its referral program over the last year.
In the meantime, the product is becoming more popular in Australia, where a homeowner recently shared his Powerwall 2 ownership experience. The Australian market has received the Powerwall 2 early since it has near perfect market conditions for the product.