The two companies are starting a $65-million fund to be used to partially subsidize installation of solar-panel systems at Honda dealers and at the homes of Honda and Acura drivers. The companies plan on working with "hundreds" of Honda dealerships and "thousands" of homeowners. SolarCity says its systems can cut homeowners' utility bills by reducing power demands from the grid.
For the longer term, the companies say they'll work on ways to further the possibilities for drivers of plug-in vehicles like the Honda Fit EV and the Accord Plug-in Hybrid to charge their cars via sunlight. Check out the press release below.
Partnership seeks to broaden efforts to address climate change by giving Honda and Acura customers an opportunity to save money with solar power
02/20/2013 - SAN MATEO and TORRANCE, Calif.
SolarCity® (Nasdaq: SCTY) and American Honda Motor Co., Inc., today announced a partnership to make solar power more affordable and available to Honda and Acura customers in the U.S., providing a cleaner source of electricity at a lower cost than utility-supplied power. The partnership, which is aimed at addressing global climate change by reducing CO2 emissions from home, business, and transportation energy use, establishes an investment fund to finance $65 million in solar projects to assist Honda and Acura customers with the initial cost of solar power installation. Millions of Honda and Acura customers and hundreds of dealerships in SolarCity's 14-state service area may be eligible for the special offer, and SolarCity and Honda expect to be able to accommodate thousands of interested homeowners in the fund.* Watch a video about the partnership.
Honda and Acura dealerships in SolarCity's service territory may also be able to take advantage of the offer to install affordable solar power through the partnership. Additionally, Honda and SolarCity will explore opportunities to integrate solar power and electric vehicle recharging, envisioning a future in which Fit EV and Accord Plug-In Hybrid owners will be able to charge their cars from the power of the sun, thereby reducing household CO2 emissions to nearly zero.
Honda, recognized for its leadership in producing fuel-efficient, low-emission vehicles, and SolarCity, America's leading full-service solar power provider, have established the $65 million investment fund to remove a pervasive obstacle to the broader adoption of solar power: the high initial investment associated with installing solar power. Through the partnership, the first for any automaker, Honda and Acura customers and dealerships will be able to install solar power with little or no upfront cost, depending on the customer's choice of plans. Customers will be given a choice to pre-pay for their solar electricity or pay a monthly payment that will be lower than the cost of their current utility bill, with insurance, repairs and monitoring service included.
SolarCity has developed a proprietary system that has greatly simplified the process by which homeowners can go solar. From an initial phone call or Web consultation, SolarCity can quickly assess whether a homeowner is a good candidate for solar, and can design a custom solar system to meet a customer's specific energy needs. In addition to offering affordable solar power, the partnership will enable owners of Honda and Acura products to make energy-efficiency upgrades-such as weatherization and more efficient heating and cooling-that can further reduce their home energy consumption.
SolarCity offers service in all or parts of Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas and Washington. Honda and Acura customers interested in these new clean energy options can find more information at www.hondasolarcity.com.
"At Honda, we are always looking at ways to improve the lives of our customers while reducing our environmental footprint," said Steven Center, vice president of the Environmental Business Development Office of American Honda Motor Co., Inc. "We believe Honda and Acura customers are going to be very interested in going solar once they find out that they can install solar at their home with little or no upfront cost, can lower their monthly utility bill, and can make a positive contribution to protecting the environment."
"By making it easier and more affordable for its customers to use clean power, Honda is reinforcing the fact that solar is the new normal," said SolarCity CEO Lyndon Rive. "This is an unprecedented partnership-few companies have made a more substantive or comprehensive commitment to environmental responsibility than Honda."
Honda is a leader in the development of leading-edge technologies to improve fuel efficiency and reduce CO2 emissions. Honda has led the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) rankings of overall vehicle environmental performance since 2000, and a Honda vehicle has topped the list of America's greenest vehicles from the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) for eleven out of the past twelve years. The company leads all automakers with twelve LEED-Certified "Green Buildings" in North America, and 10 of its 14 North American manufacturing facilities are zero-waste to landfill.
Honda has developed numerous technologies to improve the fuel efficiency and reduce CO2 emissions from its products, including the just released 2014 Honda Accord Plug-In Hybrid, the Fit EV, Civic Natural Gas and the Honda FCX Clarity fuel cell electric vehicle.
In 2006, Honda became the first automaker to announce voluntary CO2 emissions reduction targets for its global fleet of automobile, power sports and power equipment products and its global network of manufacturing plants. In 2011, the company set a new CO2 emission reduction targets for 2020, including a 30% reduction in CO2 emissions from its products compared with 2000 levels.
Honda established operations in America in 1959, and now employs more than 26,000 associates in its U.S. sales, R &D and manufacturing operations with a capital investment of more than $12.5 billion. Over 90% of Honda vehicles sold in the U.S. are produced in North America, using globally and locally sourced parts.
SolarCity® (NASDAQ: SCTY) provides clean energy. The company has disrupted the century-old energy industry by providing renewable electricity directly to homeowners, businesses and government organizations for less than they spend on utility bills. SolarCity gives customers control of their energy costs to protect them from rising rates. The company offers solar power, energy efficiency and electric vehicle services, and makes clean energy easy by taking care of everything from design and permitting to monitoring and maintenance. SolarCity currently serves 14 states and signs a new customer every five minutes. Visit the company online at www.solarcity.com and follow the company on Facebook & Twitter.