Recently, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) released a report detailing its "conservative" estimates for the amount of plug-in vehicles that will be on U.S. roads by the end of 2015, and it got to give plug-in vehicle advocates excited chills. The reports claims that more than 1.2 million plug-ins will be whizzing up and down public streets in the States, with the Chevrolet Volt accounting for nearly half (505,000) of the total amount.
Some of these numbers are, we think, pretty optimistic (and seem to be taken directly from manufacturer estimates). Sales of the Nissan Leaf are estimated to hit 300,000 by 2015 and the DOE projects that Fisker dealers will hand over the keys to 195,000 Ninas in slightly more than four years' time. The Ford Focus Electric will supposedly make a decent splash with 70,000 units sold by 2015 and sales of the Think City are expected to eclipse the 50,000-unit mark.
Oddly, the report omits vehicles like Toyota's Plug-in Prius and Coda's electric Sedan and seems to imply that all of the automakers evaluated will be able to somehow stick exactly to their planned production numbers. Therefore, we'd suggest that the DOE's "conservative" estimates be taken with a grain of salt.
[Source: Venture Beat, U.S. Department of Energy (pdf)]