The Indian automotive industry was all ears to a long and arduous drum roll before the exact figures of Goods and Services Tax (GST) were known on 1st July 2017, post which we even had our share of rejoicing over massive price cuts on luxury cars and SUVs. But this put the government in a bad light, as it appeared to be supporting the rich folks since the mass market cars were largely unaffected. Hence, the government rather quite hurriedly decided to announce a hike in cess. Luxury cars and SUVs that were to be taxed at 43% under GST will have an additional 10% in their price. That, however, is not bad enough. What's worse is that cars over four metres with over 1.5-litre engines will be included in this tax hike, which translates to cars like Hyundai Verna, Honda City, Mahindra Scorpio, Maruti Suzuki Ciaz and others which aren't exactly a part of the luxury segment. The latest policy of bringing up the cess from 15% to 25% will not only be problematic for buyers but is bound to rattle the car manufacturers, who have emphasised that the constant shift in policies will hurt the companies' long term plans.
So, what has happened now essentially is that cars that don't fall into the 'small car' category will see a price hike when the GST Council officially revises the rates in September. A long list of popular cars will see a price hike, including the Jeep Compass which we all thought was so brilliantly priced at Rs 14.95 lakh. Following are some of the cars which will be more expensive starting next month (all prices are ex-showroom):
The Creta has been a stellar success for Hyundai and is available in several trims, prices of which currently start at Rs 8.92 lakh and goes up to Rs 14 lakh for the top variant. It comes in options of 1.4 and 1.6 petrol and diesel engines with a choice of manual and automatic transmission.
The Compass was recently launched in India and is slated to be a game changer for the Amercian brand that so far had high-end premium SUVs in its product portfolio. It is available in 1.4 and 2.0-litre petrol and diesel engine options with a choice of manual and automatic transmission. The prices start at 14.95 lakh and go up to Rs 20.65 lakh.
The Verna has been a successful sedan for the Korean brand and is set to receive an update soon. Currently available in 1.4 and 1.6-litre engine options, the new Verna will only come 1.6-litre petrol and diesel engines. The Verna is currently priced in a price range of Rs 7.84 - 12.62 lakh. The onset of GST was expected to keep the prices of the new Verna even lower than the older version, however, now with an increase in cess, the price tag will be higher.
The ever so popular Scorpio will also see a hike in its price post-September revision in taxes. Mahindra's best-selling SUV retails at starting price of Rs 9.31 lakh to Rs 15.34 lakh for the top trim. It is available in various options over 2-litre engines, including the Intelli-hybrid and all-wheel-drive versions.
The Innova has proven itself to be a comfortable option for people mobility. It comes with 2.4, 2.7 and 2.8-litre engine options with manual and automatic gearboxes to choose from. The starting price of the Innova Crysta is Rs 13.31 lakh and stretches to Rs 20.78 lakh for the fully loaded trim.
The XUV500 will also witness an increase in price post the September cess revision. Currently priced in a range of Rs 12.2 to Rs 18.17 lakh, it comes in several variants that include 1.9 and 2.2-litre diesel engines with the optional all-wheel-drive system. The XUV500 also has manual and automatic transmission options on offer.
When it comes to comfortable sedans, the Corolla has made a mark in the Indian car market. Currently priced at Rs 14.89 lakh for the base variant and Rs 18.68 lakh for the top trim, the Corolla Altis has 1.4 and 1.8-litres petrol and diesel engines on offer with a choice of manual and automatic transmission.