Check Out Tesla Cybertruck's Unique Solar Charging Tonneau Cover

LDRHAWKE

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I have been hit 3 times by cars while riding motorcycles. I used all my Vegas luck from those hits.
Just having fun with inane stereotypes.
I know….I was kidding back. I ride with one rule on a motorcycle…..every car in sight is aiming at me, especially the ones sitting still at a stop sign or light, and how do I avoid them when they come. If you don’t think that way the odds of dying on a motorcycle are horrible. I have ridden in every State on a motorcycle, except Hawaii. I haven’t been hit by a car yet. It is a good way to think even when driving a car……especially in Florida with old farts and tourist on our roads. I have never had a car accident either. KNOCK ON WOOD.😎
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It's actually best for day to day use! Instead of losing range every day from sitting around or going to the grocery store, it maintains or stocks away basically free power.

And it's not like you were doing anything with that energy raining down on your truck, right?

-Crissa
If I could collect power from the sky for free, I would agree. But it is likely an expensive upgrade. If it costs $2,000 to add solar, that’s going to take 10 years to pay for itself collecting energy raining from the sky.

The power you collect when you are 150 miles from a charger is much more interesting. If I’m out in the sticks and can extend my trip by a couple days and add 20-50 more miles of range while out there. Spending that same $2,000 makes a lot more sense.

The big question mark is how much it costs. If it’s $2,000 or less, I’ll probably buy it regardless. If it’s much more than that, then it gets questionable fast.
 

LDRHAWKE

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If I could collect power from the sky for free, I would agree. But it is likely an expensive upgrade. If it costs $2,000 to add solar, that’s going to take 10 years to pay for itself collecting energy raining from the sky.

The power you collect when you are 150 miles from a charger is much more interesting. If I’m out in the sticks and can extend my trip by a couple days and add 20-50 more miles of range while out there. Spending that same $2,000 makes a lot more sense.

The big question mark is how much it costs. If it’s $2,000 or less, I’ll probably buy it regardless. If it’s much more than that, then it gets questionable fast.
i agree. For about $1000 you can get 4 flex panels that total about 700 watts and Velcro them to the retractable cover, but not very convenient, to install and remove.
 

John K

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But the cool/bragging rights is worth $2,000… I draw the line at $10k
 

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But the cool/bragging rights is worth $2,000… I draw the line at $10k
Yeah, $2k is sort of borderline, $3k maybe with the wings and a solid 30-40 mile per day Charging. Beyond that it’s really really tough to justify.
 

JBee

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Pretty expensive if it's $2k for 540W so $3.70 per watt. You could get 2x 350W 700W of panels for $350 and stick them in the vault. You could even make a frame just under the vault cover, that clips into the rail and fold them out. when you open the cover. Or just have a rack system on the rear roof with them mounted already.

But you also need a small MPPT inverter to convert the PV into 240V so you can connect it to the charge port. That comes with it's own problems, in that the CT would have to actively change its charge rate to match the solar input available from the sun. The easier way would be to charge directly to the main battery pack, but that would need a custom charger, and access to the main battery terminals etc.

So overall making it functional, let alone viable is actually harder to achieve... but still possible, especially if Tesla does the integration.
 

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Pretty expensive if it's $2k for 540W so $3.70 per watt. You could get 2x 350W 700W of panels for $350 and stick them in the vault. You could even make a frame just under the vault cover, that clips into the rail and fold them out. when you open the cover. Or just have a rack system on the rear roof with them mounted already.

But you also need a small MPPT inverter to convert the PV into 240V so you can connect it to the charge port. That comes with it's own problems, in that the CT would have to actively change its charge rate to match the solar input available from the sun. The easier way would be to charge directly to the main battery pack, but that would need a custom charger, and access to the main battery terminals etc.

So overall making it functional, let alone viable is actually harder to achieve... but still possible, especially if Tesla does the integration.
Seeing that Tesla has applied for patents and this site have shown a factory set up for solar charging, I would imagine Tesla will set up the battery charge system to easily accept solar panel input, if you buy the option or not. Just my guess.
 

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In previous threads on this subject I frequently asked for a row of standard connectors in the bed of the truck into which one could plug solar panels. The truck would have the requisite DC/DC converters (with MPPT) to send the solar energy directly to the main battery. This is similar to what is done with Jackery, Yeti... battery packs. I have never seen any reference to any inclination on Tesla's part to do this but it does seem a lot of people want something like this.
 

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In previous threads on this subject I frequently asked for a row of standard connectors in the bed of the truck into which one could plug solar panels. The truck would have the requisite DC/DC converters (with MPPT) to send the solar energy directly to the main battery. This is similar to what is done with Jackery, Yeti... battery packs. I have never seen any reference to any inclination on Tesla's part to do this but it does seem a lot of people want something like this.
This would be tremendous, then you could use modular after market solar panels. Have a permanent setup at home and some portable ones for when you go camping.
 

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Well technically, for a household PV setup plug, they could do it at around 400V string voltage, and you could pump in 10-20 kW without to much effort in controller. You'd probably have to make the range up to 500V or so so you keep the 400V at the battery side. But then for smaller panels you'd need it to go down to 30-50V, which in turn would require a boost circuit to get to main battery voltage.

So maybe a low power one that comes in on the 12V bus side at under 50V (like all those little ebay ones you can get for $20) and they boost it internally through a bi-directional 400-12V converter, and/or a 400V high power one for connecting your PV garage/carport straight into the car at say 20kW?

That would be awesome for workplace parking as you could really just wire up some panels with a bit of protection circuitry, and plug them straight into the CT, regardless of grid. Ideal for mines etc.
Panels are so cheap nowadays that any way to reduce how it connects to the grid, or if at all, has a huge impact on capital costs. Most of the cost per W is not in the PV panel side, so anything you can do to reduce interconnectivity the better. Off-grid is cheaper, especially in remote places. Plus you have the whole grid defection thing.

Even if they only have a sperate 10kW PV input along with 10kW output that would be excellent and would be a one up on any other EV out there. Huge amount of flexibility there then, especially if the PV input is active whilst driving, so say you could plug you trailer PV in as well. Great for incorporating RV builds too. I like.
 

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So with solar panels on the tonneau, if you don't drive it a lot, and it's in a Garage, not much help...
 

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