Polls and studies are important, even when they predict very different things about the future of plug-in vehicles in the coming years, but it seems there is one really good way to get a handle on what the future holds: listen to the predictions of companies that are making decisions now about future powertrain components. It's not like they're trying to affect policy or people's opinions, right? They're just trying to get their upcoming product mix right.

With that in mind, here's what auto supplier Continental says is coming with regard to its electric and hybrid vehicle business in the next five years: a tenfold expansion thanks to working with "a number of automakers" in the U.S. and Europe, according to Automotive News (sub. req.). Sure, you can say that a 10x expansion from today's admittedly small numbers isn't that big a deal, but for Continental this means doing 400 million euros ($493 million U.S. at today's exchange rates) worth of plug-in vehicle business in 2015. Taking a look at the entire market, Continental's view is similar to Michelin's, in that electric and hybrid vehicles will make us up to five percent of the global market by 2020.

[Source: Automotive News – sub. req.]