Elon Musk said Tesla made 'significant mistakes' calculating how much its Solar Roof should cost, leading to massive price hikes

Elon Musk said Tesla made 'significant mistakes' calculating how much its Solar Roof should cost, leading to massive price hikes
Tesla CEO Elon Musk.Win McNamee/Getty Images
  • Elon Musk said Tesla made "significant mistakes" calculating installation costs for its Solar Roof product.
  • Tesla hiked the prices of Solar Roofs for customers awaiting installation by as much as 70% this month.
  • Musk said the company had underestimated the complexity of roof installations.

On Monday, CEO Elon Musk answered a question about why Tesla jacked up the price of its Solar Roof by as much as 70% for customers awaiting installation.

"We did find that we basically made some significant mistakes in assessment of difficulty of certain roofs," he said, adding that the "complexity of roofs varies dramatically."

"Some roofs are literally two times or three times easier than other roofs. So, you just can't have a one size fits all situation," he said during the company's Q1 earnings call on Monday.

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"If a roof has a lot of protuberances or if the roof sort of the core structure of the roof is rotted out or is not strong enough to hold the Solar Roof, then the cost can be double, sometimes three times what our initial quotes were," he added.

Musk confirmed, as previously reported by The Verge, that customers who weren't happy with the new quote could get their deposits refunded.


He said that despite the price hikes, demand remained "strong" for the Solar Roof - although he did not clarify whether this was from new customers, or from customers awaiting installation who had agreed to the increased prices.

Read more: If you want to see the auto industry's real disrupter, ignore Tesla. Look at Fisker.

Musk also praised the company's decision to only sell its solar products together with its Powerwall storage battery, saying it would make installations less complex.

"It will be much easier, because the power from the Solar Roof, the Solar Glass Roof, or the solar panels, will only ever go directly into the Powerwall.

"And the Powerwall will only ever go between the utility mains, right, between the utility and the main power panel of the house, which means you never need to touch the main circuit breakers of the house. You never need to touch the house circuit breakers," he said.


Are you a Tesla Solar Roof customer? Contact this reporter at ihamilton@insider.com or iahamilton@protonmail.com.