India’s largest passenger vehicle-maker Maruti Suzuki India (MSIL), along with Tata Motors, Audi India and Mercedes-Benz India, said on Monday they are considering a price hike from January 2024 due to increased cost pressure, driven by overall inflation and high commodity prices.

Generally, most manufacturers announce price hikes during this time of the year to clear the stock for the new year, and also attract customers to buy during the year-end. Customers avoid buying during December to get a better resale value later when they sell their cars.

“While the company makes maximum efforts to reduce cost and offset the increase, it may have to pass on some increase to the market. This price increase will vary across models,” said MSIL. However, the company did not specify the quantum of the proposed price hike.

This is the second time that MSIL is increasing the price in the current financial year, the first being in April, when it announced a 0.8 per cent hike on ex-showroom prices of its models.

MSIL sells a range of cars from entry-level Alto to multi-utility vehicle Invicto, priced between ₹3.54 lakh and ₹28.42 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi).

A Tata Motors a spokesperson told businessline:We are considering a price hike across our passenger and electric vehicles in January 2024. The extent of the hike and exact details will be announced in a few weeks.”

Luxury car-maker Audi India announced an increase of up to 2 per cent across its models, owing to rising input and operational costs. The price hike will be effective from January 1, 2024.

“Due to rising supply-chain-related input and operational costs, we have effected a price correction across our model range, maintaining the brand’s premium price positioning. The price correction aims to ensure sustainable growth for Audi India and our dealer partners, and we will ensure that the price hike’s impact is as minimal as possible for customers,” said Balbir Singh Dhillon, Head of Audi India.

Audi India recently announced 88 per cent growth on yearly basis and retailed 5,530 units in the first nine months of this year. The brand currently has the widest electric vehicle portfolio in the segment.

“Achieving profitability through a sustainable business model remains a critical part of Audi India’s strategy, and we are committed to providing the best to our customers,” Dhillon added.

Mercedes-Benz India also said it was mulling a price hike from January 1, but did not specify the quantum.

The wholesale dispatches (to dealers) of passenger vehicles continued to remain robust in October, aided by steady demand and inventory buildup in anticipation of strong retails during the festive season.

In October 2023, domestic wholesale volumes stood at around 3.95 lakh units, represented a healthy growth (around 18 per ent) on a year-on-year basis.

According to credit rating agency ICRA, the strong wholesales over the past few months have led to an increase in the inventory levels at the dealerships; the retails during the festive season and the subsequent normalisation of inventory holding remain monitorable.