March 21, 2007

New “Green Levy” may mean higher prices for SUVs, luxury and performance cars

Vancouver, British Columbia – As part of the new federal budget’s “green” vehicle initiatives unveiled on Monday, a proposed “Green Levy” will apply to new passenger vehicles, except pickup trucks, with fuel consumption ratings of 13.0 L/100 km (21.7 mpg Imp.) or more. The levies, payable by the manufacturer or importer when the vehicles are delivered into the Canadian market, will have to be absorbed by the manufacturer or importer or passed on to the consumer which would likely mean higher retail prices.

The “Green Levy” will start at $1,000 for vehicles averaging fuel consumption between 13.0 and 14.0 L/100 km, and will increase in $1,000 increments for each full litre per 100 km increase in the combined rating, to a maximum of $4,000 for vehicles with ratings of 16.0 L/100 km or more.

Canadian automotive analyst Dennis Desrosiers say about one hundred vehicles will be assessed the “Green Levy”, mostly SUVs, luxury cars and performance cars. Desrosier’s list of vehicles to be assessed the $1,000 penalty (note: some models vary depending on engine size – ed.) include the Buick Rainier, Jeep Wrangler, Commander and Grand Cherokee; GMC Envoy and Yukon; Nissan Pathfinder, Toyota 4Runner, Chevrolet Trailblazer and Suburban; Ford Shelby GT 500, Cadillac SRX and XLR-V; Audi S4, RS4, S6, A8, S8 and Q7; BMW 650, 760 and X5; Lexus GX 470, Saab 9-7X, Toyota FJ Cruiser, VW Touareg, and Mercedes-Benz CLS550 and E550.

According to Desrosiers, vehicles to be assessed a $2,000 penalty include the Chrysler 300C and Aspen; Dodge Magnum Charger and Durango; Toyota Sequoia, Jeep Grand Cherokee V8, Cadillac STS-V and Escalade, Infiniti FX45, Mercedes-Benz CLS550, ML500, R500, GL450, CLS63 AMG, SL55 AMG and E63AMG; Land Rover LR3 and Range Rover Sport; VW Touareg V8, Audi Q7, GMC Yukon, and Jaguar S-Type.

Vehicles to be assessed a $3,000 “Green Levy” include the Ford Expedition and Expedition Max, Nissan Armada, Range Rover and Range Rover Sport; Infiniti QX56, Lexus LX 470, Mercedes-Benz CLK63 AMG, S65AMG, SL65 AMG, CL600, SL600, and S600.

The heftiest penalty of $4,000 will be assessed on the BMW M5 and M6; Mercedes-Benz G500, R63 AMG, ML63 AMG, G55 AMG; and some versions of the Jeep Grand Cherokee. Most Bentley, Rolls-Royce, Maybach, Ferrari and Lamborghini models will also fall into this category.

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