Tesla owner adds solar panels to roof; see the result

The search for alternatives sustainable in the automotive sector gains a new chapter with the story of an audacious owner of a Tesla Model Y.

Determined to explore the limits of vehicle autonomy, he adapted the roof of his electric car with solar panels, aiming to increase travel capacity by up to 100 km.

This initiative, although full of optimism, faces technical challenges and raises debates about the viability of solar cars.

Unusual story gone wrong

Historically, giants like Toyota and Mercedes have navigated these waters. Toyota incorporated solar panels into the Prius, achieving a modest gain in energy efficiency.

Mercedes, with the Vision EQXX prototype, managed to cover more than 1,200 kilometers, but the solar contribution was less than 50 km.

Such experiments, although promising, revealed an unavoidable truth: solar technology, by itself, is not yet capable of revolutionizing the autonomy of cars electrical.

Tesla with solar panels – Image: IGN Brasil/Reproduction

The Tesla Model Y project, detailed by the owner on the Reddit platform, illustrates this reality well.

Despite the promise of a significant increase in autonomy, the effectiveness of the installed solar panels raises questions.

The current configuration, which projects 27 centimeters above the ceiling, will be optimized to reduce height and improve alignment.

The goal is to accommodate 4,000 W of solar capacity, which, in theory, would allow the vehicle to be recharged while parked.

However, the practicality of this solution is questionable. The addition of panels increases weight and compromises the car’s aerodynamics, potentially reducing its energy efficiency by around 10%.

Analysts suggest that, under real conditions of use, the real gain in autonomy may not exceed 40 kilometers, a modest result given the effort and investment made.

The complexity of system Solar on Tesla is also not limited to its installation. When the car is moving, the panels are retracted, acting as an additional load on the roof.

This dynamic raises questions about the impact on vehicle performance and passenger comfort, especially considering the potential increase in noise.

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