Mercedes home storage batteries coming to the US

Mercedes vision of an integrated home that includes its at-home battery and electric

Mercedes vision of an integrated home that includes its at-home battery and electric

Mercedes-Benz Energy and Vivint Solar (NYSE: VSLR) today announced an exclusive strategic collaboration to bring the Mercedes-Benz customizable home energy storage system to the United States.

Vivint Solar, on the other hand, has installed solar energy systems in over 100,000 households across the USA, but up until this point, its services did not include home batteries as well. Instead, it is for a sleek battery the size of a mini-fridge that will allow homeowners to take better advantage of the energy their solar power systems produce, whether to cut costs or to maintain a steady source of electricity during power failures.

Some installations may cost more or less, depending on customer needs and special requests, Vivint Solar said.

Tesla in particular has touted the benefits of selling energy storage batteries with solar panels.

Mercedes's systems will be cheaper.

Vivint Solar is one of the three largest residential solar installers in the USA, though it trails SolarCity, which Tesla acquired late a year ago.

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The second advantage is that energy storage gives electric vehicle owners a more convenient way to charge their cars at home.

It is teaming up with technology firm Vivint Solar to develop batteries that "let homeowners store and save electricity generated by solar panels so it can be used around the clock", says The Verge. New customers in California will be able to buy the offering outright or finance the purchase, either through one of the institutions Vivint Solar has relationships with or their preferred lender.

The deal, he said, "allows customers to take the next step toward a sustainable energy future".

The head of Mercedes-Benz Energy Americas, Boris von Bormann, said entering the home storage market was a natural evolution for the luxury auto brand. The smallest, one module, will store 2.5 kilowatt hours of energy, and the modules can be stacked to store up to 20 kilowatt hours. "We look forward to bringing this innovative solution to consumers, beginning in our California markets".

The systems are available immediately, and Vivint plans to sell them both online and through its primary door-to-door sales operation. Deployments of these set-ups totaled 336 megawatt-hours in 2016, double the amount deployed in 2015, GTM Research and the Energy Storage Association reported in March.

Using durable lithium-ion batteries produced in Germany, Mercedes-Benz Energy storage systems can optimize solar consumption, reduce expensive peak electric loads, provide backup power, and offer a variety of grid services. Past year the industry generated $320 million in revenue in the United States, though residential systems made up just 4 percent of the total. As for those who want to go the whole hog, it will cost a cool $13,000. "So we talked to a whole bunch of companies, and through this process we felt very strongly that Mercedes-Benz was the right partner for us".

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