Today (March 24) Tesla CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter to tease on his company’s new solar roof tiles with a tantalizing tweet! “Start taking orders in April.”
Those few words set the twitterverse spinning as he’d responded to a Tweet from Michael Hols: “How are the Solar Shingles coming along? Is there an ETA? Hoping my roof survives till then.”
Elon Musk has been dropping hints about the new rooftop tiles since unveiling them last October but like many Tesla products, there’s a long lead time between introducing the idea of a product and introducing the product to market.
When Musk first introduced the solar-powered roofing product he said: “We want it to look better, last longer, provide better installation and cost less, all things considered, than a conventional roof.” As such the tiles use a color louver film, an optical trick, to hide photovoltaic cells in a glass tile so they look like conventional roofing products. Combined with the promise that they will cost “all things considered” less than a conventional roof and their ability to blend in to normal roofing materials, it’s no surprise that demand for them has already been high.
Tesla and its manufacturing partner, Panasonic, even now are ramping up production of solar cells at its Buffalo, NY, facility. The solar cells being built there will be used in the solar rooftop tiles as well as in its solar panels for SolarCity installations. However, when Musk announced them he said initially the installations will be limited and that they will first be marketed in California this year.
At this point, however, the pricing of the products is not yet known.Tweet