Everything You Need to Know About Tesla SUV Roofs

Everything You Need to Know About Tesla SUV Roofs

Tesla has come out with two SUV models: Model X and Model Y. Model X is known for its butterfly doors, while the newer Model Y is often characterized as a more spacious Model 3. One of the most notable design features of the Model Y is its roof, made entirely of glass for panoramic views.

Made entirely of glass, the roof of Tesla’s Model Y SUV is unlike any other. This glass roof gives drivers extra headroom and a view of the sky that is unmatched. All Tesla SUVs can support the use of roof racks, as long as they are Tesla Approved.

Tesla vehicles are incredibly innovative, with their roofs alone coming fully equipped with a range of different features. Read on to learn everything you need to know about Tesla SUV roofs–their cool features, add-ons, safety ratings, and more!

Tesla’s Model Y SUV Roof: Everything You Need to Know

Tesla has revolutionized the design of modern vehicles. They are electric, eco-friendly, self-driving, and have countless features that look like something straight out of a sci-fi movie. The Model Y’s panoramic glass roof is just one of its many amazing design features.

The tinted glass ceiling allows for panoramic views of the sky and scenery around you. However, this panoramic glass ceiling reportedly is a bigger perk for passengers than drivers. The metal frame of the car still extends around the front windshield, blocking panoramic views from the driver. Some other interesting features of the roof are:

  • All glass is UV protectant.
  • The roof reflects heat from the sun. You would think a big glass roof like this makes the cabin hot in the summer. However, it is designed to stay cool, with a cabin overheat protection feature.
  • The glass roof allows for more headroom within the cabin. Getting rid of chunky ceilings allows for a few more inches of headroom for both drivers and passengers.
  • Glass gives the cabin a light and spacious feel—no more claustrophobia on long car rides. The Model Y feels much more spacious and open than the dark interior of an average Sport SUV.

One thing to note, though, is that the roof does not open. A sunroof mechanism would take away from the panorama views of the seamless glass ceiling.

Model Y Camp Mode

“Camp mode” is a way for owners to sleep comfortably in the car overnight. When in this mode, all of the rear seats are flattened, and a mattress is rolled out. While you sleep, the car regulates the temperature of the cabin, so it is not too hot or too cold.

By far, the best part of Model Y’s camp mode is the view. Imagine laying out in your safe little warm cabin, looking up at a panoramic view of endless stars. This “camp mode” idea will likely revolutionize the concept of camping. Who needs a tent when you have a Tesla?

Tesla SUV Roof: Add-Ons

There are also add-ons that can make the Tesla SUV roof even more impressive. Some of them are:

  • Sunshades: For an additional cost, you can have sunshades installed in your SUV. If you are worried that the cabin of the Model Y will be too bright, a sunshade is an economical way to keep sunlight out and maintain privacy in your cabin.
  • Tinting: Instead of using a sunshade to dim the brightness in your cabin, you can also increase the tint on your glass roof (for an additional cost, of course). Before doing this, though, consider how darker tinting may reduce the allure of the bright and spacious Model Y.
  • Roof Racks: Special Tesla-approved roof racks can be installed on your SUV’s roof for the transportation of large items (kayaks, bikes, luggage, etc.). Because they are made especially for each model, you do not have to worry about racks scratching and damaging the glass ceiling of the Model Y.
  • Rooftop Cargo Boxes: Cargo boxes can also be installed atop the roof racks for maximum storage capacity.

The add-ons can turn the incredible roof into something more suited to your individual needs.

Are There Solar Panels on the New Tesla SUV Roof?

No. When you hear talk of Tesla’s solar roofing, they are really referring to solar roofing for your house. The Model Y roof is referred to as a “solar roof” only because of its glass ceilings, which let in more light than any other widely manufactured vehicle.

The lack of solar panels is not just ascetic. It is practical. As incredible as the glass roof is, there is a much bigger reason solar panels are not used.

Why There Are No Solar Panels

As of right now, vehicles cannot be powered by solar energy alone. For one, there are not very many square feet of surface area on any given vehicle. To effectively power an entire vehicle, there would need to be many more square yards of room for solar panels.

  • Charging a Tesla with sunlight for 10 hours would only be able to propel the Tesla about two miles. Even then, it would be a slow two miles.
  • Charging a Tesla for 10 hours with an AC power plug would be enough to propel the Tesla almost 250 miles at highway speeds.

The technology of solar energy has a long way to come before it can effectively power an entire vehicle. Companies such as Karma Revero and Sono Motors are currently experimenting with putting solar panels on the roofs of their vehicles.

Until solar panels are either more compact or more powerful, logistics make a solar-powered car a distant fantasy.

Is the Tesla SUV Roof Safe?

In November of 2020, you may have heard the news about parts of Model X and Model Y’s roofing flying off on the highway. This problem has happened to customers a few times, so Tesla recalled more than 9,500 Model X and Model Y cars for safety inspections. The hazard was caused by a faulty/loose roof and trim bolts.

Once this issue is fixed, both Tesla SUVs are two of the safest cars on the road. Many have questioned the strength of a glass roof in the event of a crash, wondering how glass can contest with traditional metal roofing. However, after many crash tests and safety inspections, we know now that this glass roof is just as strong, if not stronger.

The Model Y achieved a 5-Star Overall Safety Rating from NHTSA. In addition, Tesla says the Model Y is built to redistribute the force away from the cabin in the face of an accident.


You may be wondering about the specifics of the recall, especially if you already own a Tesla Model X or Model Y. Some details of the recalls for both models are below:

  • Model X: This recall affected 9,136 Model Xs from 2016. These cars were recalled mainly for cosmetic purposes. It was reported that certain parts of the Model X’s roofing were applied without a primer. This absence of primer had the potential to cause roofing trim to fly off at highway speeds.
  • Model Y: This recall affected 401 Model Y crossovers made August 28, 2020, through November 6, 2020, due to reported issues of their glass roofs coming loose. While back at Tesla factories, these Model Y’s will have their roofing bolts inspected and resecured.

For the Model Y, if your Tesla was built before August 28, 2020, or after November 6, 2020, you need not worry about your roof. It is very unlikely that the 2021 Model Ys will have this same issue.


This line of Teslas is sexy. No, really, the vehicles in this line spell out S, 3, X, Y–and for a good reason. They are sleek, beautiful, futuristic, and have incredible features that were unheard of before Elon Musk. One such feature is the all-glass roof of the Model Y.

Though Model X and Model Y roofs have had some manufacturing issues in the past, the models are still solid vehicle choices. Thankfully, the issues have been fixed, and Tesla continues to enhance its designs. Tesla SUVs are a great choice for a family car, as they are safe, compact, and use smart technology to optimize the user experience.

Tesla Discounts:


The articles here on ThatTeslaChannel.com are created by Greg, a Tesla vehicle and Tesla solar expert with nearly half a decade of hands-on experience. The information on this site is fact-checked and tested in-person to ensure the best possible level of accuracy.

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