Money for nothing

AU v US car pricing

Last week the Australian dollar hit a new high against the US dollar. That high was $1.07 for the record. The news prompted Drive.com.au to publish an article comparing the prices Australian buyers pay for luxury cars compared to other countries, chiefly the United States.

The Drive article states, “Inflated luxury-car prices are not a recent revelation but a rampant Australian dollar—continuing to break post-float records as it stretches beyond parity with the US ‘greenback’—has many car buyers again asking questions.”

AU v US car pricing

Left to defend the high Australian prices were Piers Scott from BMW and David McCarthy from Mercedes-Benz.

Scott explains, “We don’t put prices up when the currency is weak and neither do we respond immediately by putting prices down when the currency is strong. We have to hedge against these kinds of fluctuations for the customers’ benefit…”

While McCarthy claims local dealers are beholden to higher forces, “The exchange rate we pay for the vehicles, wherever they come from, is set a long time in advance by Stuttgart [the brand’s headquarters in Germany]. That currency price is locked in sometimes a year in advance.”

AU v US car pricing

If you can stomach it, we recommend you read the article in full. It’s an interesting, albeit terribly depressing, read.

The prices shown in the graphics here have been rounded to even figures and are not driveaway. They’re roughly equivalent to the Manufacturer’s List Price we are familiar with in Australia. So, looking at the price you paid for current motor here in Australia, let us know what would you buy if you lived in the States?

AU v US car pricing