Tesla in Australia 2018/2019 – Facts & Figures

Tesla have announced their Q2 earnings which notes that they have a ‘crazy’ growth outlook despite cell shortage and a slow deployment of their solar roof. Tesla in Australia is still very far behind the USA, but what can we expect the future to bring?

Tesla in Australia – 2018/19

What can Australians expect from Tesla over the next financial year? We’ve had an agonisingly slow rollout down under and there are many people waiting to see how long it takes for the solar roof to make its way out here.

With the cell shortage that has crippled availability of the Tesla Powerwall 2 in Australia, is it worth waiting for the Powerwall 3 instead? There hasn’t been any announcement yet so it really depends on your personal situation. 

The Tesla Gigafactory in Buffalo, New York is in working on speeding up production of the Solar Roof. They hope to produce 1 GW of solar products at the site annually beginning in 2019, and Tesla has said that it could even reach 2 GW/year down the track. The Gigafactory produces standard solar panels, along with the Solar Roof.

So if you have a bit of patience and are happy to wait until 2019, it’s fine to wait. Solar batteries still have a bit of a ways to go before they are a no-brainer for people to install, let alone the solar roof. But in the meantime, there are certainly solar roof alternatives like the Tractile solar roof tile or the Sonnen/Bristile partnership which they’ve called ‘Solartile‘. Have you got any questions or any experience with any of these solar shingles? Please let us know in the comments. 

Where is the Tesla Solar Roof?

Tesla in Australia - Solar Roof via @Toblerhaus on Twitter
Tesla in Australia – Tesla Solar Roof 2018 Installation (California) (source: @Toblerhaus on Twitter)

We’ve written about the Tesla Solar Roof before – and we’ve also written about its place in the Australian ecosystem, given that they’re rare as hen’s teeth in America, let alone over here. According to PV Magazine USA, it’s probable that the Tesla Solar Roof will not help their bottom line (Energy Generation and Division Revenues) until halfway through 2019 at the earliest. The reasons for this are for safety and the time lag it’s taking to get all their ducks in a row.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk clarified:

“It takes a while to confirm that the Solar Roof is going to last for 30 years and all the details work out, and we’re working with first responders to make sure it’s safe in the event of a fire and that kind of thing. So it’s quite a long validation program for a roof which has got to last for 30, 40, 50 years, but we also expect to ramp that up next year at our Gigafactory 2 in Buffalo. That’s going to be super exciting.”

According to Musk ‘several hundred’ Solar Roofs have been deployed, are being installed or scheduled for install, and international expansion (i.e. Australia!) is slowly rolling out.

PV Magazine have also written about some of the first solar roof installations in the USA – please click here to read some more about them.

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South Australian Virtual Power Plant Launched

Tesla’s South Australian Virtual Power Plant has begun deployment, with the first 100 Powerwalls combined with a 5kW solar array rolling out across a group of South Australian households this month. This rollout is in conjunction with the Household Storage Subsidy Scheme in South Australia.

South Australian Virtual Power Plant

South Australian Virtual Power Plant Tesla
South Australian Virtual Power Plant Tesla (source: Tesla / YouTube)

Housing SA are working with Tesla to install the distributed Powerwall tech which is going to start with a focus on public housing and will end up with arrays and Powerwalls/other batteries (read on to learn about the Household Storage Subsidy Scheme) on up to 50,000 homes. 

Another 1,000 South Australian households will have the Tesla batteries installed before July 2019, but potentially ‘in a few weeks’, according to Electrek. Lots of different figures floating around right now so we’ll update you as we hear more.

It’s actually quite similar to the 100MW / 129MWh Powerpack project in that the whole system will help stabilise the grid and provide a strong baseload of power so we don’t see the blackout issues South Australia suffered through in 2016. In this case it’s not one big project, however – many homes working together will decrease cost of electricity and ensure grid stability improves (and continues to). 

There’s also a separate scheme for other battery subsidies – underwritten by the $100 million Household Storage Subsidy Scheme. The push to help renters and low-income earners enjoy the benefits of solar has been fantastic and we’re excited to see some stats and results after the estimated 40,000 SA households receive on average $2,500 each. Please note that this particular scheme is for people who already have solar power installed and want energy storage as well and is not related to the Tesla virtual power plant.

You can watch a video Tesla released about the South Australian Virtual Power Plant – it’ll explain what the plan is and what we can expect to see next from SA and Tesla!

There’s also a video on Twitter from Nine News Adelaide where the current (Liberal) SA state government seem happy to take credit for this scheme (which was totally organised under the previous (Labor) government). Bit of an eye-roll, but then again it’s par for the course for our beloved Australian politicians.

Regardless of that, the tenant in this video had a $500+ bill for electricity every quarter, which has been reduced to $175 since having the solar system installed. So those are some fantastic numbers!

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Tesla Powerwall in 2018 – Availability in Australia.

What can we expect from the Tesla Powerwall in 2018? Elon Musk’s company have released their Q4 report from last year, and it also has a lot of interesting information about the direction they’re planning on taking things in 2018. It looks like the days of the severely limited supply of the Powerwall may be coming to an end. 

Tesla Energy Display - Tesla Powerwall in 2018
Tesla Energy Display – Tesla Powerwall in 2018 (source: Tesla.com)

Tesla Powerwall in 2018 – Residential Energy Storage

The Tesla Powerwall 2 has been out in Australia for almost a year now – the problem is that they have been hard to come by and Tesla have had a very difficult time meeting demand for their energy storage products (we’re not even going to delve into the Model 3 fiasco…)

“2018 will see major growth in Tesla energy storage deployments, as the production ramp of our storage products is just as steep as with Model 3,” Tesla said. “This year, we aim to deploy at least three times the storage capacity we deployed in 2017.”

They went on to elaborate on the reason Powerwalls were so difficult to source last year:

“We also deployed 87 MW of energy generation systems in Q4,
which is 20% less than Q3 2017. Solar MW deployed declined as
volumes continue to be impacted by our decision to close certain
sales channels earlier this year and to focus on projects with better
margins. In addition, solar deployments were affected by the short
supply of Powerwalls for customers who wanted solar plus
Powerwall in their house. While volumes may continue to be
impacted by these factors over the near-term, we expect growth to
resume later this year. “

This begs the question – with so many issues scaling up their energy storage how will this impact the Powerwall 3 release date announcement?

Tesla Powerpack in 2018 – Commercial Energy Storage

After the unparalleled success of the Tesla battery in South Australia, it’s unsurprising to see that they’re going to have a strong focus on commercial solar storage. 

 “Due to the success of this project, we’re seeing an increase in demand for Powerpack, our commercial energy storage product. With more electric utilities and governments around the world recognizing the reliability, environmental, and economic benefits of this product, it’s clear that there is a huge opportunity for us in large scale energy storage” their Q4 statement read. 
 
It’ll be interesting to see exactly what applications we’ll see the Powerpack being used in, both in Australia and worldwide. 

Tesla Solar Roof 2018 Update

According to the report, initial production at the Gigafactory 2 started in Q4 and Tesla are “deliberately ramping production at a gradual pace”. When “fully scaled”, the Buffalo, NY based Gigafactory 2 will be able to produce enough solar cells to add more than 150,000 new residential solar installations every year. 

If you want to learn more about the Tesla, Inc. Fourth Quarter 2017 Financial Results Q&A conference call click here to visit their site or you can find the PDF of the update letter here – Tesla Fourth Quarter & Full Year 2017 Update

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Tesla Virtual Power Plant in SA

A Tesla Virtual Power Plant will be built in South Australia, comprising of 50,000 home solar and battery systems state-wide. The deal between the South Australian Government and Elon Musk’s Tesla was announced last week by Premier Jay Weatherill ahead of the SA March state election. 

The SA government have pledged to do their part in the implementation of the virtual power plant scheme with a $2 million grant and a $30 million loan from the state Renewable Technology Fund.

Tesla Virtual Power Plant

According to Premier Weatherill, a trial of the scheme has already begun in Housing Trust properties, with 100 properties to receive their systems by EOFY (June 30), and another 1,000 in FY 18/19. After the trial is complete another 24,000 Housing Trust properties will receive the systems. 

Since there’s no word yet on the Tesla Powerwall 3 release date, they’ll use the Powerwall 2 batteries which have a 13.5kWh size. 5kW solar arrays will also be used for the 50,000 homes included in the virtual power plant. No word yet on the specifics of the solar panels the arrays will consist of but we’ll bring you that information as it becomes available.

Tesla Virtual Power Plant - Powerwall 2 Solar Battery
Tesla Virtual Power Plant – Powerwall 2 Solar Battery (source: tesla.com)

A statement from Tesla was released: 

“When the South Australian Government invited submissions for innovation in renewables and storage, Tesla’s proposal to create a virtual power plant with 250 megawatts of solar energy and 650 megawatt hours of battery storage was successful. A virtual power plant utilises Tesla Powerwall batteries to store energy collectively from thousands of homes with solar panels. At key moments, the virtual power plant could provide as much capacity as a large gas turbine or coal power plant.”

Danny Price of Frontier Economics discussed the program with the ABC:

“The biggest saving for consumers is that they don’t have to pay for as much network cost to deliver power to them because they’re generating their own power,” Price said.

Zoe Bettison, the Minister for Social Housing, discussed the reason they are installing these solar + storage systems in Housing Trust properties:

“We know that people in social housing can often struggle meeting their everyday needs and this initiative will take some pressure off their household budget,” she said.

A mammoth deal and step forward for South Australian solar – we’ll bring you more information as it becomes available!

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Tesla Powerwall 3 Release Date, Specifications, Cost.

Tesla Powerwall 3 Release Date, Specs, Cost, and Rumors.

With the great success of the Tesla Powerwall 2, people are already talking about its successor. Although the Powerwall 2 is a fantastic device and can help many households save a lot of money on their power bill, it’s far from a ‘no brainer’ at this point – you need to crunch the numbers to ensure it’s going to be worthwhile to install in your house. But with the cost of lithium-ion dropping rapidly and Tesla competitors chomping at the bit with innovative solutions to battery storage, we’ve no doubt that there’s plenty of work being done on the Tesla Powerwall 3. Could this be the device that finally makes PV solar + storage a standard for homes? Tesla CEO Elon Musk has said that they “expect to sell more Powerwalls than cars” so it’s a major part of their business. What features will the Powerwall 3 have? What will it cost and when can we expect it? Read on for more…

Tesla Powerwall 3 Release Date
Tesla Powerwall 3 – What can we expect?

Tesla Powerwall 3 Release Date

At this point we aren’t sure exactly when the Powerwall 3 is coming out, but let’s look at the time difference between the Powerwall and the Powerwall 2 and see if that gives us any clues:

Powerwall 1: Development commenced in 2012. Announced in 2015 with a pilot demonstration 0f 500 units built and installed. Production moved from Tesla Fremont to Gigafactory 1. Initially came in two models – 10kWh nickel-cobalt-aluminium cathode for backup and 7kWh for daily cycle application. Work on the 10kWh battery was discontinued and they focused on the 7kWh model and brought it to Australia in 2015, with a ten year limited warranty. 

Powerwall 2: Development commencement unknown. Announced in October 2016 at Universal Studios. Production of 2170 cylindrical lithium-ion batteries for the Powerwall 2, Powerpack 2 and Model 3 EVs starts in January, 2017.  First Australian installations early June, 2017. 

Powerwall 3: Potential 2018 announcement.

Tesla Powerwalls in 2018

Tesla’s 129MWh South Australian Battery Farm
According to GTM, in Q4 2017 they deployed 143 MWh of energy storage products, which represented a 45 percent from the same quarter YOY (year-on-year). The 129 MWh of energy storage  the Tesla Battery in South Australia partnership last year will be represented in their figures for Q1 2018.

“Solar [megawatts] deployed declined as volumes continue to be impacted by our decision to close certain sales channels earlier this year and to focus on projects with better margins,” Tesla stated. “In addition, solar deployments were affected by the short supply of Powerwalls for customers who wanted solar plus Powerwall in their house. While volumes may continue to be impacted by these factors over the near term, we expect growth to resume later this year.”

So they were about to build the South Australian battery farm within the 100 days they promised, Tesla had Samsung supply the batteries instead of manufacturing them at their Gigafactory. So it looks like they have a way to go with regards to scaling up their manufacturing processes before we start to even think about seeing a Powerwall 3. 

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Tesla Powerwall 3 Specifications and Features

 

Tesla Powerwall 1 Specs

Dimensions 1302mm long, 862mm wide, 183cm diameter (51.3″ x 34″ x 7.2″)
Battery 7kWh battery (6.4kWh ‘Usable Capacity’)
Power 7kW peak power, 5kW continuous power.
Scalability up to 10 Powerwalls
Weight 97kg (214 pounds)
Cooling Liquid Cooling (liquid thermal control)
Efficiency 92.5% round-trip DC efficiency (at optimal conditions – 25 degrees celcius (77 Fahrenheit) with 2kW charge/discharge power)
  • Tesla Powerwall 1 Specifications and Cost
    Tesla Powerwall 1 Specifications and Cost

    Wall or floor mountable, indoor or outdoor.

  • 100% Depth of Discharge
  • 10 year unlimited cycle warranty

 

 

 

 

 

Tesla Powerwall 2 Specs

Dimensions 1150mm long, 755mm wide, 155mm diameter. (45″ x 30″ x 6″)
Battery 14kWh battery (13.5kWh ‘Usable Capacity’)
Power 7kW peak power, 5kW continuous power.
Scalability up to 10 AC-coupled Powerwall 2’s
Weight Weighs 119.9kg (264.4 pounds)
Cooling Liquid Cooling
Efficiency >90% round trip efficiency.
Tesla Powerwall 2 Specifications and Cost
Tesla Powerwall 2 Specifications and Cost
  • Wall or floor mountable, indoor or outdoor.
  • 10 year manufacturer’s warranty
  • Integrated Inverter (converts the DC energy into AC energy you need to use in your house)
  • Control and view your energy usage/storage with the Tesla app (iOS and Android)
  • Degradation – it will hold around 70% of the 13.5kWh after 10 years.
  • Wi-Fi, Ethernet, 3G connectivity.
  • Off-grid support (AC Coupled)
  • Single Phase feed in.
  • 100% depth of discharge available.
  • Outside of the USA: Powerwall 2 doesn’t include inverter with the DC version and only works with a Solar Edge inverter.

Tesla Powerwall 3 Specs

This is all conjecture at this point, but we think some of the features the Tesla Powerwall 3 could include:

  • Heavily optimised for and integrated with Tesla Solar Roof (Aussies can preorder one now, will be available in 2018)
  • Heavily optimised and integrated with Tesla Electric Car (Model S, Model 3 etc.). 
  • Upgraded intelligent energy management – will learn your household’s usage, draw from weather forecasts etc. to ensure your house, battery, car or hot water stay at 100% and you are only feeding back into the grid when it’s optimal.
  • Inbuilt hybrid inverter (i.e. you can plug solar panels directly into it, eliminating the need for a separate inverter for your solar panels. The current inverter is just a battery inverter)
  • 28kWh battery (~26kWh usable capacity)
  • We predict they’ll stick with lithium-ion for the battery as its price is very affordable.
  • Alternatively, Tesla may stick with the 14kWh batteries, make them smaller and easier to install – 14kWh is sufficient power for many households – it depends on the cost/size of the batteries)
  • Single and three phase power compatible. 
  • DC version includes inbuilt inverter.
  • By 2018 Tesla expect their Gigafactory to manufacture 35 gigawatt-hours per year of battery cells. Almost as much as the current global combined battery production capacity. What will this mean for the Powerwall III?
  • What features do you think the Powerwall 3 will have? What would make it a ‘no-brainer’ for you to purchase?  Let us know in the comments.

Tesla Powerwall 3 Price

The cost of the Powerwall 1 and the Powerwall 2 was roughly the same, so we don’t expect the price of the Powerwall 3 to fluctuate more than around 20%. 

Powerwall 1 Price (Australian Installation): Around $10,000 (7kWh battery, installation and supporting hardware included).

Powerwall 2 Price (Australian Installation): Around $10,000 (14kWh battery, installation and supporting hardware included).

Powerwall 3 Price: (Australian Installation): We estimate it will stay around $10,000 installed. 

Powerwall Installers in Australia

There are quite a few companies ready to install the Powerwall 2 in Australia – here are some:

Powerwall Alternatives

If you’re not necessarily sold on the Powerwall 2 and don’t want to wait for the Powerwall 3, there are many Powerwall competitors and alternatives you can investigate, such as sonnenBYD B-Box Solar BatteryRedback Technologies, Fronius, Mercedes-Benz, and Eaton Nissan xStorage

Our Solar Battery Comparison area will help – if you have any questions or would like some guidance please email us or simply ask in the questions below! While the Powerwall is certainly an amazing product, depending on your personal circumstances you can get a better result by using one of its competitors. The sonnenBatterie, for example, is onto its 8th iteration and powers 75% of German energy storage – it has a modular capacity from 2-16kWh and, amongst others, is definitely worth a look. 

Here are some other searches you may be interested in:

  • fronius solar battery price australia
  • ampetus energy pod price
  • tesla powerwall 2 3 phase?
  • zen energy battery cost
  • tesla powerpack price australia
  • imergy esp5 australia 

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Tesla South Australia battery partnership

A massive boon for South Australian solar today as Tesla’s Elon Musk and the South Australian government have paired with Neoen to create the world’s largest lithium-ion battery. The Tesla South Australia partnership will be a world first and comes off the back of a bunch of Twitter banter in March 2017 between Musk and various Twitter users (initially spearheaded by Atlassian co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes), where he mentioned he is in discussions with the Premier about installing large scale solar in South Australia.

Tesla South Australia to create world’s biggest battery

The project will be 100MW (or 129MWh) and according to Musk on Twitter earlier in the year, it’ll be installed ‘within 100 days from contract signature or it is free’ – so we’ll be seeing the battery live and working this year! Jay Weatherill, the Premier of South Australia, was quoted as saying  “Battery storage is the future of our national energy market, and the eyes of the world will be following our leadership in this space”.

According to Nick Harmsen on Twitter, the battery will be built alongside Neoen‘s Hornsdale wind farm (currently 315MW), which is in Jamestown (mid-north South Australia). More details of the partnership coming straight from Heatherill’s office are embedded in the Tweet below:

The deputy CEO of Neoen, Romain Desrousseaux, said the project will highlight how large scale storage is now “commercially viable” and will also be able to provide “dependable, distributable power” – which was one of the main problems last year when South Australia suffered numerous lengthy blackouts, including last September when a freak storm damaged transmission lines. According to Weatherill and the ABC, the government had about 91 international bidders for the battery project, which could be used in the future to avoid load-shedding summer blackouts when electricity demand outstrips supply. Solar power (albeit as ‘energy storage’) being used to provide stability for the power grid is a new concept – and we’re very excited to see how it helps the festival state.
Elon Musk Tesla South Australia Partnership
Elon Musk announces the Tesla South Australia Partnership (source: ABC)

Tesla’s Musk was quoted today at a press conference at the Adelaide Oval as saying “It’s a fundamental efficiency improvement to the power grid, and it’s really quite necessary and quite obvious considering a renewable energy future”.

Tesla / South Australia Battery Partnership Reception

In an opinion piece for The Advertiser, Redflow CEO Simon Hackett has said South Australia’s 129 MWh Tesla project sets up the state as a world leader in battery storage. He also noted that it ‘confirms the integral role that batteries will play in the successful exploitation of renewable energy sources’.

 

 

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sonnen offering Aussies ‘free power’ via sonnenFlat

German solar battery creator sonnen are offering Australian households ‘free power’ through their sonnenFlat service in an order to bolster their foothold in the Australian market.

Natural Solar, sonnen, and sonnenFlat

sonnenFlat sonnenBatterie
The sonnenBatterie with sonnenFlat energy tariff (source: sonnen.com.au)

Australian supplier and installer of solar products, Natural Solar, have been signed up to manage the offer for sonnen. They are also responsible for the supply and install of Tesla Powerwall 2’s, so they have plenty of experience in large scale product launches.

Sonnen were launched 7 years ago in Wildpoldsried, Germany, and has been growing at a rapid pace since, including their foray into the Australian energy market in 2016.

According to The Australian, sonnen have already gained a massive 13% of the Australian market share since entering it last year. They also sold over 11,000 battery units, ranging from $10,000 to $20,000 – and sonnen sees Australia as its ‘second most important’ market behind Germany – so they are willing to take a (potentially) loss leading strategy in order to gain greater market share for the medium-long term.

The sonnenFlat energy tariff is for sonnenBatterie owners where you receive a guaranteed, prearranged amount of energy for a monthly fee. “In return, some of the energy stored in the sonnenBatterie will be used to assist in the stabilisation of the electricity grid” – according to the sonnenFlat site.

Natural Solar’s website states that the ‘free power’ will be under a tiered system and have explained it thusly:

“Looking at the Germany model for sonnenFlat … storage determines the amount of free electricity the owner is entitled to.

The website also states that: “If a customer exceeds the amount based on their tier, then the owner starts to get charged only for electricity imported from the grid (not from power generated from your solar system and power utilised from your battery) at a rate significantly lower than standard retail electricity rates.” If you can get approved, this sounds like the sort of offer that will propel residential solar+storage from the ‘maybe’ category into the ‘definitely’ for those waiting for a chance to jump into the market.

How to sign up for sonnenFlat

You can register your interest for the sonnenFlat energy tariff trial by visiting this page on the sonnen website.

Sonnen / Bristle Roofing Solartile

Sonnen have been in the news recently as they’re offering an alternative to the Tesla Solar Roof – the sonnen Solartile – click the link to learn more about how it will work in conjunction with the sonnenBatterie (and presumably the sonnenFlat tariff offer). It’s great to see a strong Tesla Powerwall competitor also offer alternatives to the Tesla roof tiles – the two in conjunction with their new ‘free’ energy tariff will undoubtedly ensure we see and hear a lot more about Sonnen in the future.

sonnenFlat packages and cost

Here’s a breakdown of the sonnenFlat pricing structure – definitely starting to look like solar can be a real money saver!

sonnenFlat Cost and Pricing Packages
sonnenFlat Cost and Pricing Packages (source: sonnen)

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Australian Tesla Powerwall 2 Installation Guide

Finally, after a litany of false starts and delays, Australians are beginning to enjoy installations of the Tesla Powerwall 2. Michael V, a user on the Australian based Whirlpool forum, documented the process of his install in a thread yesterday and it looks like the process went fairly smoothly, despite the fact that according to Michael it was the installers’ (Flashpoint Electrical and Solar at Punchbowl) first ‘actual’ install (i.e. they had practised on a prototype before but this was the first customer install). According to Tesla’s Facebook page, on April 28 they said that “Powerwall 2 installations have begun in Australia” but this is the first documented information we have on the process so please have a read and let us know if you have any questions or would like to share your experience with Australian Tesla Powerwall 2 Installation in the comments. We’d love to hear about it.

Tesla Powerwall 2 Installation and Ordering Process

The installations management team will help you with the Powerwall install process, which is, as far as we can tell, as follows  (please note this is after you’ve already pre-ordered a Tesla Powerwall 2 – there’s a ~2 month backlog in Australia right now so if you’re on the fence (wall?) about it then click here to visit Tesla’s site and order.

The Powerwall Install Process is as follows:

  1. A Tesla Certified Installer (from Downer Group, in Michael’s circumstance) visits your property to carry out a ‘site assessment’ – which will check:
    1. The suitability of your preferred location for Powerwall 2
    2. Site specific information for Tesla to provide a cost proposal for installation.
  2. A ‘proposal and sales agreement’ is prepared and sent within 7 days. Full payment is required 2 days prior to install.
  3. A Tesla Certified Installer visits your premises to install your brand new Powerwall 2!
  4. Powerwall 2 is connected via 3G (preferred) or Wifi so you can update the firmware and use the Tesla Powerwall App on your phone/tablet.

If you’d like to learn more about the actual install process, click here to view the full album of photos from Michael V on Whirlpool.

Tesla Powerwall 2 Installation Australia
Tesla Powerwall 2 Installation Australia (source Whirlpool via Michael V)

How to order Tesla Powerwall 2

You can either:

  1. Buy Tesla Powerwall 2 online from the official site ($650 AUD deposit will be charged to your credit card), or
  2. Request a callback from the Tesla Powerwall team (they generally respond within one business day).

Read more about the Tesla Powerwall 2 Australia Launch on our main Powerwall page! Find installers, Tesla Powerwall 2 alternatives, and much more.

Alternatively, if you’re interested in the Tesla Solar Roof in Australia click to read our article and information repository about this exciting new technology. Never hurts to be aware that there are also Tesla Solar Roof alternatives out there as well. Do your research before you commit to anything!

Australian Tesla Powerwall 2 Installations
Australian Tesla Powerwall 2 Installations (source: tesla.com)

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Sonnen / Bristile Roofing to offer Solartile in Australia.

Some big news on the solar roof front this week – German battery storage company Sonnen have partnered with Australian roofing company Bristile Roofing to offer their Tesla Solar Roof competitor, the Solartile, to Australian markets this September.

Sonnen and Bristile Roofing Launch Solartile in Australia

Sonnen and Bristile Roofing’s concept of an integrated solar tile is in direct competition to Tesla’s Solar Roof, which has just begun taking orders for a 2018 launch. Bristle, part of the building materials group Brickworks, is mainly going to target the 102,000 new homes to be constructed in Australia in 17/18; it seems that they’ll be targeting developers and builders who are looking to offer integrated solar systems as part of their product range.

In an industry (solar + storage) which grew over 1000% in 2016, there’s plenty of room for competition and we’re excited to see what Sonnen’s reliable and proven solar battery solutions can bring to this partnership.

“We are delighted to partner with Bristile because of their prominent involvement in supplying quality products to the building industry,” said Sonnen Australia managing director, Chris Parratt, last Thursday.

You can read more about the SonnenBatterie Eco 8.2 battery system (this, or a variation of, will be offered as part of the solar roof system) on our solar battery comparison page.

Solartile Release Date, Preorder and Cost

No word yet on the cost of the Solartile – it’s set to be released this September and we assume that preorder will become available over the coming months. Please watch this space as we’ll update it as soon as we have any information about the Solartile preorder available!

SonnenBatterie Australia Solartile Battery
SonnenBatterie Australia Bristile

Solartile VS Tesla Solar Roof

Tesla, which has previously claimed the tiles would be no more expensive that a regular roof, released statistics showing that a ‘typical homeowner’ can expect to shell out approximately $US21.85 per square foot for the Tesla Solar Roof (assuming 35% ‘active’ tiles).

Prices and specifics are yet to be revealed for the Bristile Solartile but we will update as soon as they become available.

If you want to calculate how much your home would cost to fit out with the Tesla Solar Roof based on current figures, please use the widget below.

Solartile / Tesla Solar Roof Price Estimate

Enter your roof size below in square metres and get a price estimate for the Tesla Solar Roof. We’ll update this for the Solartile as soon as figures are available.


Estimated Cost:

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Tesla Powerwall 2 Australia Release Date, Price, Specs, and Competitors.

Tesla Powerwall 2 Australia Release Date

Tesla Powerwall 2 Australia 2018 update: you can get a Powerwall 2 in Australia from a number of different vendors. It depends on which state you’re in – they’re still in hot demand and there are a few states where they’re a bit difficult to come by. If you’re interested in the different energy storage options available to you, please check our solar battery comparison articles (or simply scroll down this article to learn more) – there’s plenty to read up on!

Also have a look at the case study on Gizmodo of a Melbourne man who says the Powerwall 2 will drop his power bill to $0.

According to the Tesla website, there is a ‘May 2017’ install date for Australia. Please note that this has changed a few times already and Tesla have moved the goalposts in other ways, such as removing the DC version of the Powerwall 2, so don’t bet the house on it. But we think Q2 2017 will see some Powerwalls in Australian houses! Watch this space and we’ll be reporting as soon as the first Powerwall 2’s start appearing in Australian homes.

Tesla Powerwall 2 Australia
The Tesla Powerwall 2 in action.

You can use the search function on the Tesla website to locate Australian stores, galleries, and service centers – just click here!

Tesla Powerwall 2 Australia Price

One 14kWh Powerwall battery is priced at $8,000 AUD. Two will cost you $16,000 AUD, and so on. According to the official Tesla site the ‘supporting hardware’ comes to $750 – and if you buy multiple Powerwalls you will only have to pay this $750 once. Please note this price excludes retailer/distributor connection charges which apply in some parts of Australia (more detailed information about this soon). It also excludes installation, which ranges from $1,150 to $2,900 plus permit fees, as per Tesla’s site.

Tesla Powerwall 2 Specs

The Powerwall 2 is substantially upgraded in almost every way from its predecessor, featuring:

  • 1150mm long, 755mm wide, 155mm diameter. (45″ x 30″ x 6″)
  • 14kWh battery (13.5kWh ‘Usable Capacity’)
  • 7kW peak power, 5kW continuous power.
  • Wall or floor mountable, indoor or outdoor.
  • 10 year manufacturer’s warranty
  • Scalable (up to 10 Powerwall 2’s)
  • Integrated Inverter (converts the DC energy into AC energy you need to use in your house)
  • Liquid Cooling
  • Control and view your energy usage/storage with the Tesla app (iOS and Android)
  • Weighs 125kg (276 pounds)
  • Degradation – it will hold around 70% of the 13.5kWh after 10 years.
  • 90% ’round’ trip efficiency.

Earlier this year Tesla were taking orders for a DC (i.e. without an included inverter) version of the Powerwall 2 but this has since been discontinued. The only available version of the Powerwall 2 is the AC version with inverter already built. If you’ve already got panels and an inverter it might be worth looking at alternatives to the Powerwall 2. LG Chem produces the RES7H and RESU10H (follow this link to SolarQuotes who have other great information) with 6.6 and 9.3 kilowatt-hours of usable storage respectively.

Is The Tesla Powerwall Worth It?

Let’s crunch the numbers. Obviously costs and prices will differ from household to household so plug in your own costs to see if a Tesla Powerwall is right for you. Let’s assume you can store the maximum of 13.5kwh each day, and you’ve changed your power plan to peak/offpeak (read more here). Let’s also assume an installation cost of $10,000 AUD ($8,750 to Tesla and $1,250 to cover installation and connection charges / permit fees).

The current off-peak price is around 10c/kWh and the peak price 30c/kWh (in comparison to the ‘standard’ everyday price of ~25c/kWh).

If you were to use all 13.5kWh in peak times, this would save you $2.70 a day, or $985.50 p.a.  (30c – 10c = 20c) (20 c x 13.5) (2.70 x 365).

By the 10th year, assuming the stated 30% degradation, you would have 9.45kWh which represents a saving of $1.89 a day, or $689.85 p.a.

You can use NREL’s PVWatts calculator to find out exactly how much sun you can expect at your residence. It’s a bit complicated but an amazing tool for those who want to get granular about the postential for solar savings.

Tesla Powerwall 2 Australia is only useful for some people at this point in time – solar panel and energy storage technology is coming along in leaps and bounds so this will only get more economical. There are also other options that may suit your individual circumstances.

Tesla Powerwall Competitors and Alternatives

There are a number of Tesla Powerwall alternatives – some would argue that you’re paying for the ‘prestige’ of the name. Always do your research before you buy something based on advertising or what your friends say – solar and solar storage come down to your individual requirements. It’s definitely worthwhile to carefully measure the numbers before you commit to anything!

And without further ado, have a look at some of your other choices – they may not be as sleek, but utilitarian can be sexy too:

Redflow Zinc Bromide ZBM2 – 10kWh ‘flow’ battery (click to view)

Redflow ZBM2 Flow
Redflow ZBM2 Zinc Bromide 10kWh Flow Battery
  • 10 kWh capacity.
  • 100% usable capacity
  • Warranty for 36,500 kWh or 10 years.
  • Flat voltage curve (charge 100% capacity with constant power – unlike lithium ion)
  • Web based management system with MODBUS communication software.
  • 240kg with electrolyte.

LG Chem RESU (Residential Energy Storage Unit)

LG Chem RESU
LG Chem RESU Energy Storage
  • 3 48volt DC models (RESU3.3, RESU6.5, RESU10).
  • 2 400v models (RESU7H, RESU10H).
  • Lithium Ion technology with 90-95% usable capacity.
  • On grid / Off grid installation options.
  • AC/DC coupling available, depending on your solar panels.
  • Much smaller than the Powerwall.
  • Easy installation.

SonnenBatterie Eco 8.2 battery system (click to view)

SonnenBatterie Eco Australia
SonnenBatterie Eco 8.2
  • 4-16kWh capacity (modular design which increases in 2kWh increments).
  • Easy to retrofit to your existing panels.
  • Compatible with all panels.
  • 10year / 10,000 cycle warranty.
  • 2.5 cycles per day (2.5x ‘value’ and faster payback).
  • Inverter included.
  • Online management with ‘self learning algorithm’ (automatically decides the best times to charge and supply).
  • Proper UPS and automatic blackout protection with SonnenBatterie Protect 1300.
  • Reliable supplier who has been making these batteries since 2008.

Fronius Energy Package (click to view)

 Fronius Energy Package Solarwall.
Fronius Energy Package Solarwall
  • Six products configured in blocks of 1.5kWh (Fronius Solar Battery 4.5, 6.0, 7.5, 9.0, 10.5, 12.0 with 3.6, 4.8, 6.0, 7.2,8.4 and 9.6 kWh respectively)
  • Lithium Iron Phosphate technology.
  • Indoor installation required.
  • LiFePO4 battery technology.
  • AC integrated (hybrid) inverter – store the power as DC until you need it: extra efficiency – all the benefits of both AC and DC coupling!
  • 2 cycles per day.
  • They have a current rebate offer for purchase orders placed before July 31, 2017.

Enphase AC battery / storage system (click to view)

Enphase AC Storage System
Enphase AC Storage System
  • 1.2kWh capacity (modular – so install as many as you need – 1.2kWh won’t get you far).
  • Roundtrip cell efficiency: 96%.
  • Online monitoring software.
  • 2 cycles per day (double ‘value’ and faster payback).
  • Lithium-iron phosphate material and prismatic cells from Eliiy Power.
  • AC only – no high voltage DC involved in system (microinverters under the solar panels convert DC to AC – click here to read more).
  • Over 17,000 Enphase systems installed in Australia.

Global NRG silicone rechargeable battery (click to view)

Global NRG Silicone Rechargeable Battery
Global NRG Silicone Rechargeable Battery
  • Touted as the ‘first green battery in the world’.
  • Silicate Compound electrolyte.
  • Rapid charging time.
  • Their website is extremely poor but we’re following this one with interest too.

BYD B-Box (click to view)

BYD B-Box Australia
BYD B-Box Australia
  • BYD are the biggest supplier of lithium ion batteries in the world (market cap of ~$22b)
  • Modular design
  • 2.4KwH – 10KwH (B-Box 2.5, B-Box 5.0, B-Box 7.5, B-Box 10.0)
  • Safe lithium Iron Phosphate material
  • Needs a hybrid inverter (purchase separately from SMA, GoodWe, SolaX, and Victron)
  • AC/DC Coupling.
  • B-Box 10 can supply 10.24kilowatts of power continuously (much higher than almost every other battery if this is important to you – but please note this depends on inverter choice as well)
  • Peak power 20kilowatts for 3 minutes (also depends on inverter choice).
  • Indoor or outdoor installation.

Eaton Nissan xStorage

Eaton Nissan xStorage
Eaton Nissan xStorage
  • 4.2kWh, 6kWh, and 9.6kWh options available.
  • Single Phase / Three Phase Compatible
  • 10 Year Warranty
  • Inverter Included
  • 97% system efficiency
  • Smartphone connectivity
  • Price includes installation (in UK/EU)
  • Not currently available in Australia

Tesla Powerwall 2 Australia Installation

Tesla Powerwall 2’s are being installed in Australia right now. Read our Tesla Powerwall 2 Installation overview!

 Tesla Powerwall 3 Release Date

No word yet about the Powerwall 3, but as soon as there are any whispers, we’ll have them here. Compared to Powerwall 1, the Powerwall 2 has 40% more peak power, 50% more continuous power, double the storage capacity, an included inverter, and all for the same price. For some people it’s a viable cost-saving option – so if the Powerwall 3 can come even close to some of these improvements from the previous models, we’ll be well on our way for it to be a no brainer to have a solar PV system + energy storage on every roof in the country.

 Tesla Powerwall 2 New Zealand Installation and Price

According to FutureFive, the first New Zealand installation of a Tesla Powerwall 2 occured on August 24, 2017, in a Queenstown home. It was installed by Vector subsidiary PowerSmart Solar and they expect to install many more over the coming months. PowerSmart will also be installing New Zealand’s second Powerwall 2, but after that there are a number of other suppliers who are Tesla Certified and will be offering the product to Kiwis.

The RRP for a Tesla Powerwall 2 (including a Tesla Gateway) is $18,000 NZD for a single 14kWh (13.5 usable kWh) device.

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