Tesla will begin taking orders for its solar roof tiles on Wednesday which will be rolled out in the U.S. this year, Chief Executive Elon Musk said in the early hours of Wednesday morning.
The glass roof panels were announced last year and come in four styles: smooth, textured, slate and Tuscan. Black glass smooth and textured will be the first two styles to be installed this year, followed by Tuscan and French slate in about six months Musk said.
The Tesla CEO also said that people can order the solar roof tiles from "almost any country" with deployment happening in the U.S. first this year, followed by overseas in 2018.
In March, Musk tweeted that Tesla would begin taking orders for the roof tiles in April, so the announcement seems to be a few days behind schedule.
Tesla has been branching out beyond just its electric cars to other sustainable energy products. It acquired SolarCity last year, another company founded by Musk, which focused on solar power and energy storage. Tesla makes a product called Powerwall as well as commercial solar panels.
In a video on Tesla's website, Musk said global warming is a "serious crisis" and his efforts are a big to improve the situation. But to date, solar panels hadn't looked very appealing. That's why the company unveiled the solar roof tiles which look like real slates but are made from glass.
"Just like with electric cars where electric cars originally didn't look good, they had low range … they were like a golf cart, so people had a real hard time buying electric cars. And I think something similar needs to happen to solar. We really need to make solar panels as appealing as electric cars have become," Musk said.
"The goal is to have … solar roofs that look better than normal roof, generate electricity, last longer, have better insulation and actually have a cost, an installed cost that is less than a normal roof plus the cost of electricity."
Musk said that he would give more information in 10 hours, and did not reveal a price for the solar roof tiles.