Tesla likely to add solar power roofs to cars

Asked whether the solar charging option would be expensive, Musk says 'no'

In a Twitter exchange today, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the company will likely add solar charging technology to the roofs of future all-electric cars.

"We will probably offer that as an option," Musk wrote in the Twitter exchange with Tesla enthusiasts.

In answer to one enthusiast who doubted the value and charging capacity of photovoltaics on a car roof, Musk said the solar technology could come in the form of "a deployable solar shield like a retractable hard top."

Model 3 all-glass roof solar Tesla Motors

The all-glass roof of the Model 3.

When asked by the Twitter user if a solar rooftop would be expensive, Musk was succinct: "No," he wrote.

Last Tuesday, Musk announced during a conference call that the company has formed a new technology group to develop a highly durable glass for the Model 3, the company's first mass-market vehicle due out in 2017.

For an additional $1,500 to $2,000, Model 3 sedans will have the option of an all-glass roof, Musk said.

"I highly recommend the new all glass roof on the Model S. This was very hard to develop, but it makes the interior feel amazing," Musk wrote in a Nov. 4 tweet.

Tesla Motors' glass technology announcement came a week after the company unveiled its upcoming line of glass solar rooftop shingles for homeowners.

Tesla solar roof tile Tesla Energy

A home with Tesla's Smooth Glass Solar Tiles installed. Tesla has announced four different versions of its solar rooftop tiles.

"It is using a lot of techniques from the automotive glass business and, in case it wasn't obvious with the announcement, Tesla has created a glass technology group with some really phenomenal people," Musk said during the conference call.

Tesla is planning to acquire leading rooftop solar installer SolarCity, of which Musk is also chairman. The company's shareholders are expected to vote on the merger Nov. 17.

Even before the new glass solar shingles were announced, Musk tweeted that the up and coming glass tiles could also "incorporate heating elements, like rear defroster on a car, to clear roof of snow and keep generating energy."

Telsa solar shingle Tesla Energy

Tesla CEO Elon Musk holds a textured glass solar shingle.

Hundreds of thousands of potential Model 3 owners have already reserved vehicles through a $1,000 hold fee, which translates into billions of dollars in potential new revenue for Tesla.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Automotive

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Lucas Mearian

Computerworld (US)
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?