American automaker Tesla has reportedly proposed setting up of battery storage factory, called ‘Powerwall’ in the country, a plan that goes beyond its goal of setting up an electric vehicle plant in India. According to a Reuters report, the Elon Musk-led company has submitted a proposal to Indian officials to support the country’s battery storage capabilities with its “Powerwall”.
Manufactured by Tesla Energy and introduced in 2015, Powerwall is a rechargeable lithium-ion home battery that stores solar energy so that it is available on demand. Powerwall automatically provides backup power at night or during power outages, assuring energy security and a clean energy lifestyle. The system is priced over $5,500 in California with additional cost of solar panels; and is eligible for U.S. federal tax credits and local state and utility incentives for solar and energy storage.
Tesla has reportedly also sought incentives to build a factory for making and selling the battery storage systems but the request has been turned down by the Indian officials. However, a fair business model for the automaker could be created by the government by offering subsidies to those buying such products. In addition, the officials have urged the company to work on reducing the cost of its battery storage technology and added that the government could help to unlock the market with demand expected to be high.
While Powerwall is designed for residential and small commercial use, Tesla could consider developing larger-scale solutions for the industry if its India plan is successful. The proposal is still under review and it is unclear at the moment if the plan will be realized or not. There has been no official confirmation from New Delhi or Tesla.
For some time now, Tesla has been in talks with the Indian government to enter Indian soil and tap the local EV market. But the proposal of setting up a factory for battery storage, for which the company is keen to find residential and industrial customers, is part of Tesla’s plans for a broader presence in India. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his to Tesla Motors campus in 2015, wherein he was given a tour by the company’s chief Musk, reviewed the battery storage product and later stated that he had enjoyed discussing the potential of battery technology to benefit farmers.