Tesla has started taking preorders for its "solar roof", the tile-sized solar panels that the company announced back in October 2016. The glass-covered tiles are created to look like a traditional roof, doing away with the need for separate solar panels.
The price per square foot varies with the proportion of solar and non-solar tiles - Tesla says active tiles will cost $42 per square foot while inert tiles will be around $11 per square foot. Pre-orders require a $1,000 deposit to join the pre-order list with and United States orders will begin to ship later this year (international orders will be sometime in 2018).
In posts on Twitter, Elon Musk said the tiles can be ordered from any country from this afternoon, with "deployment" to be this year for the U.S., and next year for overseas - including the UK.
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How does the Tesla Solar Roof work? Two other varieties, Tuscan and French slate styles, are expected in six months.
Beyond the electricity that Tesla's solar tiles can help generate, there's one other key benefit. Tesla's Solar Roof is initially launching in California, and then it will be slowly rolled out across various part of the US.
The product, which Tesla will offer through its SolarCity division, will be a no-brainer for homeowners, Musk has said. That's in the USA, at least - we're doing our own analysis of the costs of how Tesla's solar shingles fit into the Australian roofing market. For instance, a 2,000 square-foot home in Louisville, Kentucky, would cost $66,700. There, they can also calculate the estimated upfront cost of a solar roof.
As such, "subsidies don't really matter", Musk added, responding to concerns that federal incentives for solar power, which can account for as much as 30 percent of the price, may be washed out in a Trump administration. "Solar energy can be generated, stored and used day and night, providing uninterrupted power even if the grid goes down". Tesla priced the Solar Roof at $21.85 per square foot. Musk said at the unveiling that Tesla had established a new glass division and that it had worked with SolarCity to design the new solar product.