- Tesla Motors plans to spend about $2 billion building a factory in the Southwest that will start making low-cost batteries in three years. With partners providing about $3 billion, Tesla expects to make about 500,000 electric vehicle batteries a year by 2020.
- Tesla CEO Elon Musk believes the factory will lower battery kWh prices by more than 30% in its first year of production.
- Tesla intends to use solar and wind generation to run the factory.
Tesla's plans for a major battery facility is big news for utilities. Tesla is working with SolarCity to pair solar with energy storage, which, if the price is right, would make distributed solar even more appealing. The Rocky Mountain Institute believes that utilities will start to see more and more customers leave their systems as the price of solar and storage falls later this decade.