New Delhi: With hike in excise duty on Sports Utility Vehicles (SUVs), the domestic market leader Mahindra & Mahindra is planning to make changes in its models to ward off the impact of the government’s decision.
The leading automobile company is of the view that it is the need of the hour for all the SUV manufacturers to make changes in their models to handle the situation.  

Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram had announced to hike excise duty on SUVs from 27 percent to 30 percent in the General Budget for 2013-14.  Apart from the model Quanto, every other SUV model of M&M has come under the ambit of excise duty hike. On the other hand, Maruti Suzuki’s utility vehicle Ertiga and Renault’s Duster remain unaffected from the impact of hike in the duty.

According to the new announcements, excise duty hike will be applicable on the SUVs having length of more than 4 meters, 1,500 cc engine capacity and 170 mm ground clearance.

Mahindra & Mahindra president Pawan Goenka said, “Increase in taxes is a matter of concern. But we are more worried over the way excise duty hike is implemented. If excise duty hike is seen as a compensatory move for the diesel subsidy, why the rest of the diesel vehicles are not brought under the ambit of duty hike? If the problem lies with cramped spaces at the parking areas, why other vehicles apart from the SUVs are exempted from the duty hike?”

According to Goenka, with such an increase, the company has no other option but to make changes in its SUV models to ward off the impact of excise duty hike. He also stressed on the need for having stability in the rules and regulations in the country. However, he also expressed hope that Minister for Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises, Chairman of Finance Committee SIAM will take into account the grievances of auto companies and will reconsider the decision.

JPN/Bureau 

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