9 Plug-in Cars Hitting the Road in 2010


Whether you’re ready to throw down for a plug-in vehicle, or just want a heads up on what models you might see zipping around U.S. roads next year, here’s nine models to have on your list. A couple of these cars rolled out in 2009 and we expect a few may be delayed until 2011 or later, but all of them are at this point slated for availability for the U.S. market in 2010. Hitting that target would make them some of the first models out of the gate in what will be an increasingly competitive field over the next five years.

Make/Model (Type) Launch Price What You Should Know
Tesla Roadster (BEV) Feb. 2008 $109,000 If you want a high-performance luxury electric sports car, this may be your best bet. If what you really want is a roomier, lower-priced sedan, you might wait for Tesla’s planned Model S (slated for a 2011 launch).
Tesla Roadster Sport (BEV) June 2009 $128,500 If you’re on the waiting list for Tesla’s inaugural model, the Roadster (and have an extra $20K to spare), you can upgrade to the even higher end Sport version.
Think City (BEV) Mid-2010 About $28,690, plus $183/mo. for battery leasing (if U.S. pricing is similar to pricing for Norway market) Norway-based Think has long intended to bring its vehicles to the U.S., and last spring it formed a 50-50 North American joint venture, initially planning a U.S. launch for 2009 (financial troubles set it back). Now the company is finalizing site selection for a U.S. factory and hoping for government funds.
Fisker Karma (PHEV) Sep. 2010 $87,900 Fisker originally planned to launch the Karma in 2009, but announced the new 2010 launch date this month. The company also said in early December it would name a battery supplier by year’s end, but with one week left in 2009 that still hasn’t happened.
Coda Sedan (BEV) Fall 2010 $45,000 Initially available only in Cali. No extra charge for special “options” — Coda tells us $45K includes all basic amenities. For upgrades, Coda plans to direct customers to “authorized aftermarket shops.”
GM Chevy Volt (EREV) Nov. 2010 Around $40,000 The Volt will have a small gas-fueled engine that will kick in when the battery runs low. But the company said recently it’s, “not ready to commit to a final [fuel] tank volume because we’re still learning so much.”
Nissan Leaf (BEV) Late 2010 (reservations in Spring 2010) “Comparable” to mid-size family sedans Insiders expect the LEAF to go for $24,000-$30,000, excluding the battery, which may be leased.
BYD Auto e6 (BEV) Late 2010 Around $40,000 Los Angeles, Calif. is “at the top of the list” of potential lead markets for China-based BYD’s first U.S. offering. If BYD begins selling the e6 in 2010 as planned, it will be ahead of schedule for the previously planned 2011 entry into the U.S. market.
Aptera 2e (BEV) 2010 $25,000-$40,000 (depending on options and powertrain) Aptera has hit financial troubles and delayed the launch of the futuristic-looking 2e from its previous 2009 production target.

Photo courtesy of Think


Herman Morton

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These cars are not “financially within reach” of me. Does anyone have statistics on what percent of Americans can actually afford a $40,000 car? I know, there’s the Nissan and Aptera, but what’s the deal with “leasing” the battery. How much more is that going to cost? And GM. Shame on you! $40 for the Volt! What are you thinking?

Bruce N

Nice to see that some of these options will be financially in reach of many consumers. Without this we will never see the benefit of economies of scale.

Windmill Jobs

These cars look like a good investment. If only more people had access to renewable energy sources like wind or solar, then they would be powered be clean technology while creating local jobs for the area. Some of the jobs can also be high paying like for people who get Wind Technician Training


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