The Financial Express, Bangalore
Honda Siel Cars India (HSCIL), which stopped selling its hybrid car 'Civic Hybrid' from last November immediately after six month of its launch in June 2008, is likely to bring back its hybrid version to India after the Central budget as the company believes that the Union government would bring down the import duty on motor vehicles.
"We are watching the Budget. If the import duty is reduced, we may consider to restart selling Civic Hybrids in India," said Tatsuya Natsume, director-marketing of HSCIL, the Indian subsidiary of Japanese car giant Honda Motor.
The company discontinued selling Civic Hybrid in India due to higher import duty. "By the time the Civic Hybrid lands in India, the price is doubled due to import duty that stood at 104%," he said. Excise duty and VAT further increased the on-road price of the car, he added. Civic Hybrid from Honda was the first ever hybrid technology car launched in India. During its brief presence in India between June-November 2008, Honda sold around 300 cars in India after importing them from Japan as completely built units (CBUs).
A HSCIL official requesting anonymity said that the company has taken a hit due to its hybrid launch, as it had cut down the price from Rs 21 lakh to Rs 13 lakh within two months of the launch to clear the inventory. The company sold only 60 cars at the original price tag of Rs 21.5 lakh while the remaining 240 vehicles were sold at the discounted price of Rs 13.36 lakh, the official said