At long last, a handful of lucky customers in selected areas drove home in brand-new 2016 Chevrolet Volts last month. Sometime this month, full pricing and availability for the 2016 Nissan Leaf with its 107-mile range will be revealed.
These two updated plug-in electric cars represent improvements on their predecessors; their long-impending arrival has been blamed by some for tepid electric-car sales over the past several months.
But while the new models should boost sales in months to come, the new Volt's impact on October sales was likely low.
Last month, 1,238 Nissan Leafs were delivered, bringing in the 10-month total for 2015 thus far to 14,868.
That compares to 2,687 delivered in October last year, and 1,247 in the preceding month of September.
The figures keep the Leaf at the head of the U.S. total plug-in sales charts, however, with a total of 87,190 sold over almost five years.
2015 Nissan Leaf
But sales of Chevy Volts last month more than doubled over the previous month, with 2,035 delivered for October, giving a year-to-date total of 11,299.
[UPDATE: Chevrolet spokesperson Michelle Malcho told Green Car Reports that of the 2,035 Volts sold, 1,324 were the new 2016 models--or about two thirds--despite that model only being sold in limited regions until early next year.]
Chevrolet had sold 1,439 Volts in October a year ago, and a low 949 last month as sales of the old first-generation model wound down.
The Volt closely trails the Leaf in total U.S. sales to date, with 84,656 delivered since December 2010, the month when both cars first went on sale.
Tesla Motors refuses to release monthly sales of its Model S and Model X luxury electric vehicles, so it is impossible to compare the company's sales to those of other plug-in vehicles on an equivalent basis.
The fourth high-volume electric car is the BMW i3, which returned to its average of roughly 900 cars a month after an all-time record of 1,710 sales in September.
Donald Davidson's 1917 Detroit Electric Model 68 with Chris Neff's 2014 BMW i3 REx
There were 986 i3 delivered last month, encompassing battery-electric and range-extended cars combined, for a 10-month total of 8,879.
In just 18 months, BMW has delivered just under 15,000 of its small, edgy-looking electric car.
Beyond those models, the next best-selling vehicles with plugs are the pair of plug-in hybrids from Ford: the Energi models of the C-Max compact hatchback and the Fusion mid-size sedan.
Fusion Energi sales rose to 849 in October from 808 the previous month, for a 10-month total of 7,748--considerably lower than last year's equivalent total.
The C-Max Energi logged deliveries of 695 last month, slightly down on September's 719. Its year-to-date total of 6,373 is also down on the 2014 total.
The Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid, whose sales led that category in 2012 and 2013, is now out of production. (The Honda Accord Plug-In Hybrid has also been withdrawn from sale.)
Plug-in Prius sales have dwindled considerably, and were at just 91 units last month, for a 10-month total of 4,125, just a fraction of its pace in previous years.
Lower-volume electric cars
One unexpectedly high sales total was the Volkswagen e-Golf, which delivered a whopping 596 units in October. That's its highest-ever monthly total, and it brings the 10-month total to 3,161 units.
It's impossible not to wonder whether at least a handful of VW Golf TDI buyers in October were persuaded to switch to a zero-emission plug-inversion of the Golf instead.
The similarly-sized but pricier Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric delivered only 81 units, however, its lowest in more than a year, for a year-to-date total of 1,768.
2016 Kia Soul EV
That category also includes the Kia Soul EV, although Kia has refused to disclose or discuss its sales figures--leading to the assumption that they're low.
Smart ForTwo Electric Drive sales fell for the third month in a row, to just 75 in October, its lowest total since June 2013. The year-to-date total of 1,030 is now only half of the similar period last year.
And the tiny, low-selling Mitsubishi i-MiEV racked up 9 more sales, pushing its 2015 total over the 100 mark--to 102.
There are also the compliance cars, for which sales reports are now reduced to the Chevy Spark EV and the Ford Focus Electric.
Chevrolet delivered 177 Spark EVs, for a year-to-date total of 2,311, and surprisingly, two discontinued compliance cars reappeared on last month's sales charts.
One each of the Toyota RAV4 EV and the Honda Fit EV found buyers, after no sales for the preceding five and nine months respectively.
Ford sold 126 Focus Electrics, its lowest monthly figure since January. Its year-to-date total of 1,393 is also down on the previous year's comparable period.
Fiat Chrysler refuses to discuss sales of its Fiat 500e, widely thought to be several hundred per month.
Low-volume plug-in hybrids
The sexy BMW i8 gull-winged plug-in hybrid coupe delivered another 149 units, bringing its 10-month total to 1,491--or almost twice the number of Cadillac ELRs sold over the same period.
GM's range-extended two-door luxury coupe had 82 sales in October, for a year-to-date total of 822 units--and total sales since launch of only 2,138 cars. Future collector-car alert?
The pair of E-Hybrid Porsches (Cayenne and Panamera) sold 125 and 28 units, respectively, for 10-month totals of 840 and 358.
The Cayenne only went on sale in August 2013, so prior-year comparisons don't apply, but the plug-in hybrid Panamera has fallen to less than half its sales level last year.