MAJOR German brands are bullish with retail price hikes for BMW, Audi, Volkswagen and mid-year Porsche, as EV costs rise and shareholders demand higher profits.
BMW Australia last month raised the price up to $9000 and followed the previous increase in January that pushed the price up from $1600 to $11,500.
Most of the big gains are in sport and luxury models, such as the M3 which cost about $2500 more in April than before; M4 variants increase by $2600-$2800; M5 raises $4000; M8 increased by $5600; and the X7 raised $8000.
Since April 2022, the price increase of these models has increased by 5% ($8300) for the input M3; $8400 or 5% for M4; 5.5 percent or $14,700 for the M5; and 3% ($11,500) for the M8.
Even the electric models are not insulated, with some variants of the i4 going up to $3000-$4000; i7 raises $9000 (xDrive60); and iX increased by $5500.
But BMW, like its peers, conscious that electric vehicles must remain – or be seen as maintaining – affordable, has kept the price of the iX3 still at $104,900 and the iX1 at $84,900. .
In less exotic (and non-EV) models, the base 118i jumped $900 to $54,800; 320i increased $1300 to $80,200; 520i increased $2000 to $107,700; while the smallest SUV, the X1 sDrive18i, remains at $60,400; and the X3 sDrive20i entry rose $1400 to $83,100.
BMW is hardly alone. Germany’s leading bulk sports car maker Porsche is poised to raise prices but has taken the unusual stance of telling the world about it before it happens.
Porsche is pleased to warn buyers that a price increase is taking place. In March, it made a global announcement saying it would be “significantly increasing in price” by the middle of the year.
The move is supposed to boost profits and create a deliberate price gap between the active ICE models and its expanding EV range. Future EV versions of the Macan, Boxster and Cayenne are expected to increase in price by 10-15% over the ICE versions.
Currently, Porsche’s entry-level Boxster is $122,000 and the cheapest Macan is $89,300 (all plus on-road costs).
In June of last year, Porsche raised the price of some models – but not the 911 – to $15,800 for the Cayenne Coupe Turbo GT, now $351,900.
The cheapest Macan currently costs $89,300, up from $84,800 in mid-2022.
Audi raised prices up to $2900 (RS7) in January for most models. This comes after two price increases on select variants in 2022.
January price hikes were made on a number of models, including the A1 (up $450 to $1050 depending on variant); A3 (up $600-$1000); A4 ($600-$1600); A5 (up $200-$1500); A6 ($1200-$2900); and A7 increased from $1700 to $2900.
In its SUV line, Audi has raised the price of some versions of the Q2 from $500 to $1000; Q5 ($700-$1800); and Q7 ($1800-$2300).
One model that hasn’t been hit with the price hike is the electric e-tron GT which still costs $180,200 (plus cost), which was the base price when it launched in February.
As of April 2022, the cheapest e-tron was $139,900 but variants and device levels have changed.
In February, the entry level for the e-tron was $147,400, which remains unchanged to this day, perhaps another example of the OEM’s desire to stabilize prices of EV models while increasing revenue from ICE templates.
Audi has previously cited an increase in the price of raw materials as the main reason for the increase in new car prices.
Volkswagen has also announced a price increase that applies from June to seven of its nine models. It says prices will increase from $500 to $3600 though it won’t affect those who place orders before the June deadline.
This is the third price hike at Volkswagen in nine months, after one in September and another in December.
The company attributed this increase to rising production costs and the impact of inflation.
Examples of price increases since April 2022 include the Golf 110TSI Life currently priced at $37,490 (an increase of $2200 for the year); Golf GTI (up $1,000); Passat 162TSI Elegance wagon ($1200); T-Cross 85TSI Life (up $1140); Tiguan 132TSI Life 5 seats (up $1000); and Touareg 210TDI Elegance, up $4550.