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Tesla is launching new Powerwall home batteries in 2016

The company should be able to build a lot more of them at its Nevada Gigafactory.

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Tesla's Powerwall was a big success from the moment that Elon Musk launched it last year. In fact, the device is sold out until mid-2016, and may have already hit $1 billion in sales. It turns out there was a lot of pent-up demand -- if you have solar panels, the device's giant battery lets you run your house after dark, and if you don't, it provides a reliable, long-lasting backup. Even though the first-gen Powerwall only started shipping a few months ago, Musk admitted at a private function (in the video below) that "we are coming up with the version two of the Powerwall probably around July or August of this year."

Musk said the new model would provide "moderate improvements" over the current one, including a longer life cycle. Right now, the Powerwall relies on batteries from Panasonic, but the new version will use cells built at the Tesla Gigafactory. The Nevada plant's enormous capacity should allow Tesla to build a lot more of them to clear back-orders and hopefully keep up with demand. A lot of customers are homeowners with solar panels, but businesses have also been adopting the higher-capacity commercial models. The first-gen consumer model comes in a $3,000 7kWh version and allows daily cycling, ideal for solar panel owners. The $3,500 10kWh model supports weekly cycling and is aimed at backup chores.

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