Mumbai: In recent developments, major players in the automotive industry, such as Maruti Suzuki, Tata Motors, Mahindra & Mahindra, Honda Cars, and MG Motor, have disclosed plans to raise car prices starting January 1, 2024. According to experts, this strategic move is believed to be a method employed by these companies to alleviate the burden of existing inventory, a concern highlighted by the Federation of Automobile Dealers Associations (FADA).
As reported by FADA, there is a notable accumulation of unsold vehicles at dealerships, with current inventory levels ranging from 63 to 66 days. This surplus has raised concerns among industry experts, including FADA, which has consistently expressed worries about the growing inventory and its potential to induce significant distress among dealers. The impending price hikes are seen as a preemptive measure to mitigate this issue before the close of the year.
Several industry analysts have echoed concerns about the forthcoming price increases. FADA, over the past few months, has consistently drawn attention to the mounting inventory problem. Without effective intervention, the weight of unsold stock could lead to considerable challenges for dealers, underscoring the urgency of addressing the situation.
The automotive giants attributing the price hikes to the rise in commodity prices include Maruti Suzuki. The company, in a stock exchange filing, stated that the planned price increase in January 2024 is a response to heightened cost pressures driven by overall inflation and increased commodity prices. Despite the company’s efforts to minimize costs and absorb the impact internally, passing on some of the increase to the market has become unavoidable.
Similarly, MG Motor India has cited escalating costs associated with overall inflation and heightened commodity prices as the rationale behind their decision to implement price hikes. To alleviate the potential impact of the price increases on consumers, MG Motor has introduced a series of special year-end offers for prospective buyers.
Luxury carmakers are not exempt from the industry-wide trend, as exemplified by Audi India. The company has announced a price increase of up to 2% across its model range, effective January 1, 2024. Audi India clarified that the price hike would apply to all models, including Q3 SUVs and sports cars, with rising input and operational costs being cited as the primary drivers behind the decision.
The move towards price adjustments by these automotive giants reflects a broader industry trend where companies are proactively addressing challenges related to surplus inventory and rising operational costs. The emphasis on commodity price increases as a key factor underscores the delicate balance that automakers must strike between maintaining profitability and remaining competitive in a dynamic market.
In conclusion, the automotive industry’s decision to implement price hikes in the upcoming year serves as a strategic response to the mounting challenges posed by surplus inventory and escalating operational costs. While concerns persist among industry experts, these measures are anticipated to provide relief to dealerships and ensure the sustainability of the automotive sector in the face of evolving market dynamics.