Yesterday BMW Australia announced their exemption from the Luxury Car Tax (currently 33% of the GST-inclusive value of the vehicle). If you weren’t aware of the date being April 1, you might have fallen for this and started to get quite excited at what could have been a substantial pricing reduction on vehicles which when we see them on the road…well let’s just say we get very excited.
However BMW has used the announcement as a way to bring attention to their campaign against the Luxury Car Tax (LCT), describing it as an unjust charge on the introduction of safety and environmental features that makes no sense. Here at Daily Auto Fix find we have to agree and are glad to see that an organisation like BMW is making a stand.
Phil Horton the managing Director of BMW Group Australia in this week’s Video of the Week has talked of BMW’s vehicles and how the ultimate driving machines are recognised for their fantastic performance as well as their fuel efficiency. He also explains that over the past seven years the Dow Jones Sustainability Index has recognised BMW as the world’s most sustainable automobile manufacturer.
As you might know BMW has big plans when it comes to ‘green vehicles’ with the launch of the ActiveHybrid5 vehicle next year and following that the launch of their first electric vehicles. Best thing of all they will behave and act just like you would expect from a BMW.
With the increase of incentives around the world to produce fuel efficient, hybrid and electric vehicles, it does seem strange and even wrong that companies like BMW introducing vehicles like above will get stung with LCT.
BMW and other European manufacturers are regarded time, and time again as the leaders of vehicle technology, performance and safety. Yet the Australian Government places a huge barrier in front of consumers from being able to afford these cars with the 33% tax.
We know we have issues with huge road tolls here in Australia, and it is made known continuously through road safety campaigns. This is what is believed to be a combination of lacking driver education and old vehicles which are no comparison to vehicles of today for safety and handling.
Also, don’t forget that LCT is the GST-included value of the vehicle meaning you are paying a tax on a tax. Tell us how that makes sense? Whilst it is seen as BMW, Mercedes, Audi, Porsche and other European manufacturers are the only ones affected by LCT, Horton says that Toyota is actually the biggest victim of LCT, with more cars than other manufacturers qualifying for LCT with the threshold only being $55,000 or $75,373 for “fuel-efficient cars”. (Information on LCT can be found here)
So whilst in the Australian Car Industry taxes are numerous and usually taxed on top of each other, and we are given lots of reasons why they are needed. LCT, we believe is a tax which Australians can live without. Making our Australian Market more competitive and making our roads that bit safer.