Al-Haj Automotive, the assembler and seller of Proton cars in Pakistan, has announced a significant price hike across its vehicle lineup, further exacerbating the challenges faced by the country’s car industry. This move comes at a time when the industry is already grappling with production halts and a series of factors contributing to a worsening crisis.
In contrast to their previous stance of avoiding price increases throughout 2022, with the exception of the Saga Standard Automatic variant in February, Al-Haj Automotive’s recent announcement signals a substantial shift in their pricing strategy. This unexpected move has left customers shocked and has added to the woes of an already struggling car market.
Several key factors have contributed to the ongoing crisis in the Pakistani car industry. The depreciation of the Pakistani rupee against major currencies has increased costs for automakers who rely on imported components. Additionally, government-imposed import restrictions have limited the availability of crucial parts and components, further impacting the industry.
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Automobile manufacturers have also been burdened by higher taxes, which have added to their financial challenges. Rising freight charges have further compounded these difficulties, making it increasingly difficult for car companies to maintain affordable prices for consumers.
Moreover, escalating raw material prices have hit the Pakistani car industry hard, making it increasingly challenging for automakers to sustain production while keeping prices reasonable. Logistical hurdles and disruptions in the supply chain have only worsened the situation, leading to prolonged production halts and delivery delays.
Al-Haj Automotive has released its updated price list, which has come into effect immediately. The new prices for the Proton vehicle lineup reflect significant increases:
- Saga Standard Manual: PKR2,824,000 (old price) to PKR3,749,000 (new price), representing an increase of PKR925,000.
- Saga Standard Automatic: PKR3,299,000 (old price) to PKR3,949,000 (new price), reflecting an increase of PKR650,000.
- Saga ACE Automatic: PKR3,149,000 (old price) to PKR4,099,000 (new price), marking a significant rise of PKR950,000.
- X70 Executive AWD: PKR6,740,000 (old price) to PKR8,799,000 (new price), indicating a staggering increase of PKR2,059,000.
- X70 Premium FWD: PKR7,190,000 (old price) to PKR9,299,000 (new price), representing a substantial hike of PKR2,109,000.
These price hikes by Al-Haj Automotive are expected to further burden potential car buyers and impact the demand in an already beleaguered market. The company, like other automakers in Pakistan, cites challenging economic conditions and various industry hurdles as reasons for the need to implement these increases.
As Pakistan’s car industry continues to grapple with the ongoing crisis, consumers and stakeholders anxiously await measures from the government and industry leaders to stabilize the market and provide relief to both manufacturers and customers alike.