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Mercedes Becomes Latest Automaker to Throw Its Hat in the Energy Storage Ring

by | May 16, 2017 | Green Home

You don’t have to be a business genius to know the number one rule in today’s energy market: If Tesla is doing something, you should probably also be doing that thing too.

It seems Mercedes-Benz has taken this mantra to heart: The luxury car company has debuted an in-home energy storage unit, much like Tesla’s Powerwall, which aims to transform the future of personal renewable energy usage.


With its new lithium-ion battery, Mercedes paints a picture of a future in which consumers can use natural energy sources without being limited by their availability. Instead of exporting excess solar energy back to the grid, for example, battery owners can store it for future use. Think sun-powered lights even in the middle of the night or during a power outage.

Mercedes and Tesla aren’t the only automakers throwing their weight behind energy storage: BMW and General Motors are reportedly developing their own battery options, and Nissan’s artsy xStorage, which reuses batteries from the company’s electric Leaf vehicles, is now available for pre-order in the UK and other select European countries.

While these car manufacturers may grab the headlines, they aren’t necessarily leading the energy-storage charge. They’ll have to go up against energy companies worldwide like Sonnen and Eos that already have products on the market.

Tesla Powerwall

Nissan xStorage

sonnenBatterie eco

While the field of competitors hawking these sleek and expensive batteries is rapidly crowding, it’s not yet clear who will gain the upper hand.

Here’s what we know about the three automaker’s batteries: Tesla, which will soon complete its massive Nevada Gigafactory, is the only American automaker with batteries on the market. Time will tell whether others will follow, and the extent to which brands will want to compete for American homeowners, who consume far more energy than their European counterparts. Nissan, for one, has no plans to send its batteries to the American market, and there’s no mention of the product on its US website. Mercedes’ website still states that “US Products will be available in 2017,” but it is unclear whether an exact drop date will be available soon.


Mercedes Energy Storage Home

Tesla Powerwall 2

Nissan xStorage

Available in the US?

Soon, so they say



Storage capacity

2.5k – 20 kWh

13.5 kWh per Powerwall; can purchase up to 10

4.2 kWh


10 yrs

10 yrs



$10,000, according to Business Insider

$6,200 + instillation

£3,200 (about $4,140)

What do you think? Can Mercedes compete with Tesla? Will Europe’s energy storage outstrip American innovation?

Bonus! To learn more about the history and future of batteries in our world, check out the batteries episode of the BBC’s 50 Things That Made the Modern Economy podcast.

About The Author

Zoë Randolph

Zoë is a writer and editor interested in tech, history, and human behavior. Her hobbies include petting strangers’ dogs, offering unsolicited running criticism through major motion pictures, and attempting to anticipate how UC Berkeley’s sports teams will disappoint her this year.


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