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Holden chops prices as tariff cuts loom

Vectra cut: The ZC Vectra CD sedan now starts off the range under $30,000.

Holden adjusts offers on Vectra, Astra, Barina and Zafira for 2005

Holden logo31 Dec 2004

HOLDEN has announced both price reductions and specification upgrades for imported passenger cars on the eve of the January 1 five per cent tariff cut.

However, it says the tariff cut is only partly responsible for its adjustments, instead describing them as a result of a regular evaluation of market pricing.

“There have been a whole group of market forces considered, tariffs being one of them,” a Holden spokesperson said. “But they are by no means the primary determining factor.” From the new year all imported passenger cars will pay 10 rather than 15 per cent duty to the federal government on the value of a car at the factory gates.

In the lead-up to the cut there has been widespread debate over actions car companies will take – either simply dropping retail prices or holding them at their current level and adding specification.

In the case of the slow-selling Vectra, Holden has gone both ways, taking $2000 off carry-over CD and CDX models, while maintaining existing pricing on the top-spec CDXi (see comparative pricing panel below).

The five-speed manual four-cylinder CD sedan now starts at $29,990, a dramatic $5000 drop from its launch price back in March 2003, when exchange rates drove pricing up for the ZC Vectra and effectively killed off demand.

A round of adjustments 12 months ago succeeded in rekindling interest in Vectra, which is now selling well ahead of its 2003 rate. However, it still has a way to go to catch the popular Mazda6, which courtesy of a tariff-based price cut early in December now retails for $27,690.

Apart from new pricing, Holden has also added the 155kW 3.2-litre V6 to the CD Vectra lineup, joining the entry model’s 108kW 2.2-litre four-cylinder engine.

The CD also now gets sports seats, new design alloy wheels, twin cupholders front and rear and an MP3-compatible single disc CD player.

The CDX hatch is now equipped with larger 17-inch, seven-spoke alloy wheels, while the CDXi hatch adds items such as rain-sensitive wipers, automatic headlamps, electric memory adjustable exterior mirrors and ‘anti glare’ light-sensitive rear view mirror and driver’s exterior mirror. All 2005 Vectras are equipped with new generation audio systems.

 center image The other imports to get a pricing change are the Zafira compact people-mover, which comes down nearly $3000, and the Astra convertible, which is reduced by $2000.

Meanwhile, the old TS model Astra small car, which is now tagged the Classic with the arrival of the new generation AH Astra, has what Holden claims is a $1000 price cut. But in reality that was already in place as “introductory pricing”. The same applies to the Barina mini.

The Astra Classic now offers standard front power windows and a new $1500 option pack that includes 15-inch alloy wheels, ABS, traction control, rear power windows, power mirrors and cruise control. The AH model is unchanged in price or specification.

The Barina range adds an MP3-compatible CD players.

Pricing

Astra Classic Old/New price
Classic Hatch $19,990/$18,990
Classic Hatch (a) $21,990/$20,990
Classic Sedan $19,990/$18,990
Classic Sedan (a) $21,990/$20,990 Astra Convertible Old - New price
$45,990 - $43,990
(a) $47,990 $45,990 AH Astra Old - New price
CD 5dr Hatch $21,990 - $21,990
CD 5dr Hatch (a) $23,990 - $23,990
CDX 5dr Hatch $25,490 - $25,490
CDX 5dr Hatch (a) $27,490 - $27,490
CDXi 5dr Hatch $29,990 - $29,990
CDXi 5dr Hatch (a) $31,990 - $31,990 Zafira Old - New price
$32,890 - $29,990
$34,890 - $31,990 Barina Old - New price
3dr Hatch $14,990 - $13,990
3dr Hatch (a) $16,990 - $15,990
5dr Hatch $16,990 - $15,990
5dr Hatch (a) $18,990 - $17,990
SRi 3dr Hatch $22,490 - $22,490 ZC Vectra Old - New price
CD Hatch $32,990 - $30,990
CD Hatch (a) $34,990 - $32,990
CD Hatch V6 (a) $36,990
CD Sedan $31,990 - $29,990
CD Sedan (a) $33,990 - $31,990
CD Sedan V6 (a) $35,990
CDX Hatch (a) $42,490 - $40,990
CDXi Hatch $45,990 - $45,990
CDXi Hatch (a) $47,990 - $47,990

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