Technology

Panasonic Has A New Solar Roof Tech, But Will Tesla Inc Use It In The Model 3?

Tesla will be starting production of the Model 3 by July, and everyone wants to know whether the automaker will introduce a solar roof option in the car or not. In November, CEO Elon Musk even teased the notion of a solar roof option for the upcoming affordable electric car.

Tesla
Blomst / Pixabay

Will Tesla give the Model 3 a solar roof option?

Musk has not been very forthcoming about Tesla’s plans for solar roofs on its electric cars, but he did tell the press that they would “probably” provide solar roof technology as an option. This was just a probability, not a full-on promise, so we cannot predict anything for sure. However, the latest development does hint at the possibility for a solar roof on the Model 3.

Tesla’s partner, Panasonic, revealed a solar roof for the Toyota Prius Prime plug-in hybrid earlier this week. This new solar panel technology is only designed for vehicles and is code-named the “HITPhotovoltaic Module for Automobile.” The solar roof technology is only available for the Toyota Prius PHV currently, but you never know. It may be tweaked to support the Model 3.

This technology may not be a huge game-changer, but it is certainly not something that can be taken lightly. The technology used in solar roofs for cars and houses is pretty similar, and this may motivate the EV firm to use this technology in the Model 3, notes smartstocknews.

Solar panel technology – how it can help?

A solar roof designed to harness the sun’s power and store it to charge a car seems quite appealing and feasible. BGR notes that the size of the Model 3‘s roof would be enough to hold a solar roof. According to estimates, it would add an extra mile or two of range every day.

When it comes to pros, the solar panel can generate 180 watts of electricity, which is not only sufficient to charge the lithium-ion batteries but also enough to power the car’s accessories. Toyota revealed that while parked, the solar panel can add around 3.7 miles of range to the battery per day. The panel can also charge the battery even when the car is in motion.

There are chances that the solar roof option may come in the future but not right away. The automaker already has many production milestones, and this would become an added pressure. In the meantime, Tesla owners should probably just wait and keep their eyes and ears open for the next-gen Supercharger technology, which, according to Musk, will a big step forward.