Following the hike in excise and customs duties in the Budget for 2012-13, luxury vehicles in are set to become more expensive by up to Rs 3 lakh as auto makers have decided to pass on the additional burden.
Premium vehicle makers, including Mercedes Benz and Audi, have decided to increased the prices of their vehicles and are currently finalising the exact amount of hike, while BMW is evaluating its options.
“We are going to pass on the additional burden to customers. We have not decided the exact amount yet, but on an average it will vary between Rs 2 lakh and Rs 3 lakh,” Mercedes Benz India Director (Corporate Affairs and HR) Suhas Kadlaskar said.
Mercedes-Benz India currently manufactures its C, E and S Class luxury sedans in India. The existing prices of these cars vary between Rs 26 lakh and Rs 1.01 crore.
The other models that the company sells in New Delhi through fully imported route are ML-Class, GL-Class, E-Class Coupe, E-Class Cabriolet, R-Class, SLS AMG, AMG-Series and Maybach. As per its website, these vehicles are available between Rs 45.39 lakh and Rs 5.85 crore.
Another luxury car maker Audi India also said it may hike the prices of its products in the country. The company may now re-evaluate its pricing strategy in India.
Audi also assembles some its premium models in India. These are sedans A4 and A6, and sports utility vehicle Q5. The prices of these vehicles start from Rs 27.7 lakh.
The company also imports other models such as A7, A8, Q7, RS5 and R8. The prices of these cars start at Rs 55.35 lakh.
Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee had announced hiking the basic customs duty on imported vehicles valued over USD 40,000 and with engine capacity of over 3,000 cc and 2,500 cc for petrol and diesel driven vehicles respectively to 75 per cent from 60 per cent.
Another luxury car maker BMW, however, said it has not taken a decision on passing on the burden to consumers.