Tesla is launching Solarglass today, a third version of its Solar Roof tiles, which are now cheaper and more beautiful than a concrete tile roof with solar panels, according to the company.
It now starts at about $34,000 after incentives for an average home.
When Tesla launched its Solar Roof Tiles in 2017, the automaker said that it would start volume production and installation in 2018.
However, the rollout turned out to be much slower and installations have been limited to the homes of some executives and a few customers.
Tesla later delayed volume production to 2019.
CEO Elon Musk said that they had to make some changes to the product in order to make sure it will last for 30 years and become cheaper.
Today, they are launching the version 3 of their solar roof tiles, which they are also calling ‘Tesla Solar Glass’.
The new version of the tiles is less expensive, faster to install, and it will last longer.
Musk said in the announcement:
“With version 3, we managed to achieve a cost less than what the average cost plus retrofit solar panels.”
Tesla now lists a base 2,000 ft² roof with 10 kW of solar roof tiles installed will cost $33,950 after incentives:
Tesla expects to be able to quickly ramp up production of these new solar tiles over the next few months – resulting in a significant economy of scale and reducing the cost.
Musk claims that Tesla can quickly ramp up to producing 1,000 roofs per week at Tesla’s Gigafactory 2 in Buffalo.
However, the biggest difference with the latest version of the Tesla Solar Roof tiles is that the made it easier to install.
Earlier this year, Electrek released a first look at Tesla’s V3 solar roof tile technology with custom fittings and the first real Tesla Solar Roof quote.
Today, Tesla’s management confirmed that those fittings are being streamlined with the new version of the solar roof and they reduced the customization and special tools needed to install a solar roof.
When first Tesla Solar Roof, Tesla said that it should take roughly the same time to install a solar roof as a tile roof installation, which is typically 5-7 days.
We previously reported that Tesla Solar Roof installations were still taking about 2 weeks, which adds to the cost of the product and makes it hard to scale.
Musk said that they are focusing on significantly reducing the time required to install the tiles.
Tesla is basically running installation competitions to install the solar roof as fast and efficiently as possible at their own facility in Fremont to improve installation time. The CEO sees the potential to get it done in a day with a relatively big crew.
Musk said that Tesla will also work with third-party installers to certify them for solar roof installations and expect the program to help grow solar adoption.
Installations are starting right now with the existing backlog of orders and the company is taking new orders that should start next year.
The CEO said that he expects Tesla’s Solarglass to become the best option for people who want a new roof because he believes it will be the best-looking option that also happens to produce solar power.
Tesla has been trying to find a way to create product differentiation in the solar space, which is dominated by a few kinds of very similar solar panels and this new solar tile product is certainly different.
Earlier this week, Musk said that Tesla Energy is becoming a “distributed global utility” through its solar and energy storage business, which he believes could outgrow automotive business.
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