Tesla Powerwall registration SA
(Tesla)

  • Electric car company Tesla is now accepting direct reservations for its Powerwall home energy storage system in South Africa.
  • Prices start at R166,800 for one unit, an go up to R1.46 million for ten.
  • The first Powerwall was installed in SA in early 2016, but the high-end batteries haven't exactly taken off locally.
  • Reserving a unit won't tell you when you get it.
  • The Megapack batteries aimed at utility companies also now have a South African webpage, but there's nothing to see there yet.
  • For more stories go to www.BusinessInsider.co.za.

Electric car company Tesla is now accepting direct reservations for its Powerwall battery systems in South Africa, with prices starting at R166,800.

Tesla says it has more than 100,000 Powerwalls installed around the world. The first in South Africa was installed in 2016. But despite South Africa's ongoing electricity rationing, and Tesla's connection to the country by way of SA-born CEO Elon Musk, the high-end home batteries remain rare in SA.

On Wednesday, Tesla announced the availability of online reservations in SA without providing more details, such as how long orders might take to deliver.

Those interested can choose sets of anything between one and 10 units (which will cost R1.46 million, according to the Tesla website), and provide contact details.

"Once you place your reservation, a Tesla energy specialist will reach out to discuss your project," Tesla says.

Each Powerwall unit weighs 114 kilograms and offers 100% depth-of-discharge for 13.5 kWh. They have proven popular for their lack of required maintenance, their compact shape – a little over one metre tall and 75 centimetres wide, with a depth of less than 15 centimetres – and a simple but powerful management system.

Powerwall management
(Tesla)

The units can be used to store solar energy, or simply plugged into the grid to act as a backup during outages.

Tesla also announced a South Africa specific webpage for Megapack, its industrial-sized batteries aimed at renewable energy producers and other large-scale industrial users, at 3 MWhs each.

The page contains no new information about Megapack systems, no rand-based pricing, no indication of the lead time for batteries to reach South Africa, and only a generic email address for those who want more information.

(Compiled by Phillip de Wet)

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