The entire world is dealing with the adverse economic shocks and uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus pandemic. Pakistan is no exception and the economic situation is worsening especially after the lockdown was implemented. Auto manufacturers had to close manufacturing plants just like other sectors.
Like other auto manufacturers, Toyota has also been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic.
Soft launch of Yaris Suspended
The first setback that Toyota had to endure was the suspension of the soft launch of Yaris. The dealerships were set up for this soft launch; however, the call for lockdown from the government suspended it. The soft launch is usually at the dealerships and it ensures a significant footfall of potential customers to experience and view the newly launched vehicle.
These potential customers then book the newly launched car. With the suspension of the soft launch, an earlier influx of bookings was adversely affected. The original launching event by Toyota was also canceled due to the concerns related to the spread of the coronavirus in a large gathering of people.
With the dealerships closed, the booking of the new Yaris sedan and other Toyota vehicles is suspended. This is because if you have to book a vehicle, you have to need a dealership for that. You cannot book your vehicle directly with the Indus Motor Company (IMC).
According to sources, allocations of the dealerships have also been suspended by the IMC. With the lockdown period further extended, we will have to wait and see how things will unravel to allow dealerships to reopen and bookings to commence again. The lockdown will also delay the deliveries of vehicles that have already been booked with Toyota.
Price of Yaris to Increase
With the massive depreciation of the Pakistani Rupee against the US Dollar over the past few weeks, the rise in the prices of vehicles is now imminent. The prices at the launch of the new Yaris sedan were introductory and they were bound to increase.
According to estimates, they would have increased around PKR 50,000 to 55,000 for each variant of the Yaris. After the depreciation, the prices will now rise in the ballpark of PKR 100,000 to 150,000. Nevertheless, the prices of Yaris had to increase as the prices quoted earlier were introductory ones.
The prices were scheduled to increase within a month even before the depreciation of Rupee against Dollar. This large increase in the price of Yaris this early after the launch can also damage future demand for the new sedan. Introductory prices of all Yaris variants are mentioned in the table below:
|TOYOTA YARIS GLI MT||PKR. 2,349,000/-|
|TOYOTA YARIS GLI CVT||PKR. 2,519,000/-|
|TOYOTA YARIS ATIV MT||PKR. 2,449,000/-|
|TOYOTA YARIS ATIV CVT||PKR. 2,599,000/-|
|TOYOTA YARIS ATIV X MT||PKR. 2,649,000/-|
|TOYOTA YARIS ATIV X CVT||PKR. 2,809,000/-|
Prices of Other Toyota Vehicles
The last time Toyota increased prices of its vehicles was when the UD Dollar was at PKR 150. Now the Dollar has risen up to PKR 168, which is a massive increase and will have a subsequent effect on the prices of vehicles.
According to sources, the price of every Toyota vehicle will be jacked up by at least PKR 100,000 and it can go well up to PKR 200,000 for high-end vehicles like Corolla Altis Grande and Fortuner. The rapid inflation and the fact that the economy is going into a recession will have adverse effects on the demand for automobiles in Pakistan.
Note here that the manufacturing plants of all the auto manufacturers in Pakistan are closed due to lockdown. Indus Motor Company (IMC) also issued a press release earlier intimating the closure of its plant to help the government in battling the coronavirus pandemic. It also apologized to the customers for the probable delay in deliveries of vehicles.
The auto industry was already struggling with low demand even before the coronavirus pandemic. This was due to higher taxation, rapid inflation and the depreciation of Rupee against Dollar. The pandemic and the current situation have made things even worse.
Stay tuned on PakWheels blog for more updates on the situation of the auto industry of Pakistan. Drop your thoughts in the comments section below.
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