Tesla’s Solar Roof could be seen on more homes as the company plans to increase production in 2018. They said in a letter to shareholders they’ll be moving production from their Fremont, California factory to the Gigafactory 2 in Buffalo, New York. On a recent conference call, Elon Musk provided for the first time a concrete time frame for ramping up solar roof production.
Tesla plans to start manufacturing more Solar Roofs soon. In a Wednesday conference call, chief technology officer JB Straubel said they are “on track to turn on most of the production line in Buffalo by the end of the year.” In the shareholder letter, Musk and chief financial officer Deepak Ahuja said as they move production to Buffalo, energy generation with the Solar Roofs will become a larger part of Tesla’s business in 2018.
Tesla has deployed less solar capacity in the third quarter than one year ago: 109 megawatts (MW) as opposed to 187 MW. In the letter, Musk and Ahuja said, “The lower developments are in large part a result of deliberately deemphasizing commercial and industrial solar energy projects with low profit and limited cash generation.”
As they make the move from Fremont to Buffalo, they said in the letter Solar Roof installations will increase slowly at first, but “as we fine tune and standardize the production and installation process, we expect to ramp Solar Roof production considerably in 2018.”
Musk and Ahuja affirmed Musk’s vision for pursuing renewable energy – over ten years ago, Musk said in his first master plan Tesla aimed to provide “zero emission electric power generation options.” In this recent letter the two executives said sustainable energy – and storing it – are crucial components of the company’s mission “and will drive long-term revenue growth and profits.”
Images via Tesla