Maruti Suzuki India seeks tax relief for hybrid, CNG cars

New Delhi: The country's largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) is pitching for tax relief for hybrid and CNG cars in addition to electric vehicles in order to promote green mobility in the country. MSI Chairman R C Bhargava said there is a need to promote hybrid and CNG cars as it will take some time for mass acceptance of electric vehicles (EVs) considering the high cost of technology right now.

"Personally we would like to see GST benefits linked to greener/cleaner cars. The Government gave tax cut on EVs but hybrid should be given duty cut. There should be tax cut on CNG vehicles as well," he told a news channel. The hybrid cars are 25 to 30% more efficient and will help reduce oil imports, he added. "For industrial development, reducing oil import costs is important. Hybrids and CNG will help. Government should look at both hybrids and CNG options before we transition to EVs," Bhargava noted.

The GST Council last month reduced the tax rate on EVs to 5% from the existing 12%, effective from August 1. It also slashed the GST on EV chargers from 18% to 5%.However, there is no tax relief for hybrid and CNG cars. GST rate for petrol and diesel cars and hybrid vehicles is already at the highest bracket of 28% plus cess. Bhargava said so far the government has not announced any target for EV four-wheelers in the country. He added that customers' acceptance depends on availability of charging infrastructure, range and cost.

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