General Motors confirmed December 13 that the first Chevrolet Volt vehicles have been shipped to US customers - and that it is likely to be far outpacing the Nissan Leaf with deliveries in the first few weeks.
The Volts left the US automaker's Detroit-Hamtramck facility destined for customers in California, Texas, Washington DC and New York, with GM saying that they could arrive "in the next few days".
On Saturday, Nissan staged a media event for the delivery of the first Nissan Leaf to California resident Olivier Chalouhi and plans to follow it up with deliveries in Southern California Arizona, Oregon, Seattle and Tennessee this week.
However, the Japanese-made Leaf won't be reaching many more of the 20,000 consumers who have ordered, with Automotive News reporting that the launch will be "slow going, with few cars available to delivery."
Members of Nissan Leaf online enthusiast forums reported several weeks ago that the estimated arrival date of their Leaf had in most cases been moved from December to early 2011.
However, another shipment of the cars is scheduled to arrive on December 20, with the deliveries ramping up in the new year so that all orders can be fulfilled by summer 2011.
The current vehicles are being manufactured in Japan, with US domestic production of the Leaf not scheduled to begin until 2012 when a new factory in Tennessee comes online.
General Motors expects to ship 160 vehicles from Detroit-Hamtramck this week, producing a total of 10,000 during 2011 and 45,000 in 2012.