UK-based automaker Jaguar Land Rover has criticized the recently introduced British vehicle tax scheme, claiming it would deliver an unfair advantage to non-premium automakers.
The new taxing strategy is expected to have a heavy toll on sales of large sport utility vehicles and sedans, with the government deciding that after 2017, drivers that own a vehicle with a list price of more than 40,000 pounds (56,000 euros) will incur a 310 pounds penalty on top of the current 140 pounds standardized through the annual vehicle tax system. “It sends a very negative message to the UK’s premium automotive industry,” commented JLR in a statement. “The UK should be proud of its premium car manufacturers, which support huge numbers of jobs and investment, not specifically penalize them.” Industry observers point out the new tax would seriously dent internal demand for luxury autos. More so, Britain is home to a large number of luxury brands: Jaguar Land Rover, Aston Martin, Lotus, Morgan, McLaren, Bentley and Rolls-Royce.
The United Kingdom’s industry association, the SMMT, said the new levy was a “surprise and is of considerable concern,” as the new surcharge on luxury models “risks undermining growth in UK manufacturing and exports.” “Leveling a punitive tax on these vehicles will almost certainly impact domestic demand,” commented chief executive officer Mike Hawes in a statement. Colin Couchman, IHS Automotive’s director for light vehicle sales forecasts, believes customers of such larger vehicles would opt for smaller, less expensive models, affecting certain automakers. Additionally, starting April 2017, only cars emitting 50 g/km of CO2 or less would be exempted from the vehicle tax – the current regulation has 100 grams as the limit.
Via Automotive News Europe