Premium issue continues to haunt new car buyers

Published April 29, 2021
Amid rising auto production, the issue of ‘on-money’ and late deliveries on locally assembled cars continues to haunt buyers. — Reuters/File
Amid rising auto production, the issue of ‘on-money’ and late deliveries on locally assembled cars continues to haunt buyers. — Reuters/File

KARACHI: Amid rising auto production, the issue of ‘on-money’ and late deliveries on locally assembled cars continues to haunt buyers.

According to data of the Pakistan Automotive Manu­facturers Association (PAMA), overall car production rose to 106,439 units in 9MFY21 from 86,628 units in the same period last fiscal year.

Consumers are also taking a costly ride as no assembler has announced any price cut despite low cost of imports of parts and accessories on account of rupee appreciation against the dollar from August 2020 till to date.

One dollar is now quoted at around Rs154 in the interbank market versus Rs168.78 in August 2020.

Meanwhile, Hyundai Nishat Motors suspended the booking of Tucson model a week ago. Dealers say the company is facing shipment issues of imported parts from Korea and they cannot say exactly when the booking for this vehicle would resume.

A market survey reveals that if the person books a newly launched Hyundai Elantra, then he would be able to get the vehicle by September or October. However, for urgent delivery of this model, a buyer has to pay a premium of Rs500,000.

Consumers are also facing delays in delivery of Kia vehicles with the exception of Picanto manual which is available a few days after booking.

Picanto automatic is in high demand and its waiting time stretches till Septem­ber while the ‘on money’ on this vehicle is over Rs300,000.

Dealers give one-month time for Kia Sportage Alpha in case it is booked today while the vehicle holds no premium on spot sales.

A buyer needs to manage Rs275,000-400,000 for other variants of Sportage owing to delivery time of August.

Kia Sorento’s will be delivered during July or August on booking during the current month while the vehicle carries Rs600,000 as ‘on money’.

An assembler said due to the global shortage of semiconductor chips, electronic parts supply has been hit hard. As a result, car output has suffered and delivery has slowed down.

He said this is happening globally but Japan seems to have overcome this shortage.

Buyers are not in a hurry for Honda City’s existing models (1,300-1,500cc) as a new model is coming up. The company intends to start taking booking of new City either in May or June.

However, the delivery of Honda Civic takes at least two to three months.

Among Toyota vehicles, dealers said Yaris’s delivery month is June while buyers will get Fortuner, Hilux and Corolla by August to September.

The premium money on Toyota Yaris hovers between Rs30,000-40,000 while on Fortuner and Revo it ranges between Rs450,000-500,000. Corolla carries Rs400,000 on money.

However, the spokesperson for Indus Motor Company (IMC) said the delivery time of Yaris is just one month in all variants.

He said Corolla demand is going high due to the introduction of new model X and this situation always happens with the launch of every model. Fortuner and Revo are also in high demand, he added.

The delivery timing of Suzuki Cultus is 90 days while the waiting period of WagonR ranges between 60-90 days followed by 30-60 days for Alto660cc.

A Suzuki dealer said issues of delays in getting containers, high freight rates and port congestion is causing delays in arrival of parts from abroad, resulting in extending the delivery period of vehicles.

Published in Dawn, April 29th, 2021

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