BMW latest carmaker to cut prices in wake of China’s anti-monopoly probe

Move comes after mainland probes into price-fixing by foreign carmakers

PUBLISHED : Friday, 08 August, 2014, 3:42pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 09 August, 2014, 8:05am

Guangqi Honda, the Chinese joint venture of Japan's Honda Motor, will cut prices for spare parts from next month, becoming the first Japanese carmaker to reduce prices in the wake of China's anti-monopoly probes against several manufacturers.

The venture between Honda and Guangzhou Automobile said on its website yesterday the price cuts would be effective from September 1.

A spokesman said the details would be announced later.

A report by news portal said the price cuts would apply to about 30,000 spare-parts products, citing an unnamed source from Guangqi Honda.

China's anti-monopoly investigations in the vehicle sector have widened to include Japanese companies as the National Development and Reform Commission said on Wednesday it had completed probes into 12 Japanese firms on allegations of fixing prices for vehicle parts and bearings.

It also confirmed German luxury brand Audi and American carmaker Chrysler Group had engaged in monopoly behaviour and that penalties would be imposed soon.

German carmaker BMW announced on Thursday it would reduce prices for more than 2,000 spare parts by an average of 20 per cent from Monday.

Prices for car body parts would be slashed by 45 per cent, power generators 40 per cent and brake and battery prices 20 to 25 per cent, it said.

The NDRC on Wednesday said it investigated BMW car dealers in five cities including Suzhou and Wuxi last week.

BMW said the company paid full attention to the recent anti-monopoly probes by the price supervision unit of the NDRC on car maintenance and after-sales service.

The company said it reduced the wholesale prices for 3,300 spare parts by an average of 15 per cent in the first seven months of this year in response to the anti-monopoly probes.

As a premium carmaker seeking long-term and sustainable development in China, BMW has communicated with the NDRC and related authorities, the company said in a statement.

Separately, Chrysler reduced the prices of two models by between 45,000 yuan (HK$56,650) and 65,000 yuan, while prices for some spare parts were lowered by 20 per cent.