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Tesla restarts its solar-panel business, offers rental plans


This Aug. 8, 2018, file photo shows a Tesla emblem on the back end of a Model S in the Tesla showroom in Santa Monica, Calif. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel, File)

    The Associated Press

    Published Sunday, August 18, 2019 5:07PM EDT

    PALO ALTO, Calif. – Tesla is trying to spark its solar-panel business by letting consumers rent rooftop systems rather than buy them.

    Tesla Inc. CEO Elon Musk announced the offering in a series of tweets Sunday.

    The company will allow residents of six states to rent solar-power systems starting at $50 a month — or $65 a month in California — for a small set-up.

    Musk says consumers can cancel anytime, although Tesla’s website says there’s a $1,500 charge to remove panels and restore the roof to its previous condition.

    Besides California, rentals will be offered in Arizona, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey and New Mexico.

    Electric car maker Tesla bought residential solar installer SolarCity for $2.6 billion in 2016 but installations have plunged in recent quarters. Tesla stopped selling systems in Home Depot stores.

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