KARACHI: Kia Lucky Motors has attempted to bridge the gap between 1,800cc and 2,700cc vehicles in Pakistan by introducing Sportage sport utility vehicle (SUV) with engine capacity of 2,000cc.
In Pakistan, the engine capacity of motor vehicles starts from 660cc and goes up to 2,700cc. “The FWD model of Sportage comes with a price tag of Rs4.59 million and AWD model is priced at Rs4.99 million,” said Kia Lucky Motors CEO Asif Rizvi while speaking at a press briefing.
The new market entrant has also introduced a few modern features to give stiff competition to rivals such as dual airbags and downhill brake control. “We are thankful to the government that it introduced a lenient auto policy for new entrants,” remarked the CEO. “Customers will now be able to select from a wide range of vehicles.”
“Gone are the days when customers used to visit the market and only found limited options with a delay of six months after booking,” he said. Kia Lucky Motors has set up an auto manufacturing plant with capacity of 50,000 vehicles per annum and an investment of $175 million at the Bin Qasim Industrial Park.
Rizvi stressed that the government needed to reduce the number of levies on the auto sector to pave the way for its growth. He pointed out that around 30-38% of the revenue earned on the sale of a car went to the government in the form of taxes.
“By imposing taxes such as 5% federal excise duty (FED), if the government loses one customer, it also loses revenue equal to 38% of the cost of a car,” he said. “So, the best practice for governments around the world is to earn less on a massive scale instead of earning more on sale of fewer cars.”
Pakistan’s car market grew 15% in the last five years despite hurdles such as 10% FED, rupee depreciation and increase in the cost of car leasing, he pointed out. “We hope it will grow to 500,000 vehicles by 2025.”
Published in The Express Tribune, August 8th, 2019.