Singapore COE prices go past SGD100,000 mark for the first time since December 1994, in open and Cat B –

Demand for vehicles in Singapore has pushed Certificate of Entitlement (COE) prices for the open category as well as large cars in the country past the SGD100,000 (RM319,120) mark for the first time in nearly 28 years. The last time the COE was priced above SGD100k was in December 1994, when premiums in the then Category Four classification cost SGD$110,500 (RM352,600 at current exchange rate), Today reports.

Yesterday, COE prices in Category B (for large cars above 1,600 cc or 130 bhp and electric vehicles (EVs) with an output over 110 kW) climbed to SGD100,684 (RM321,300), a SGD4,795 (RM15,301) increase over the previous premium of SGD95,025 (RM303,245). In the open category (Category E), which can be used for any types of vehicles except motorcycles, premiums went up by 5% to SGD100,697 (RM321,345).

It wasn’t just these two categories that saw a price increase, because every classification saw a hike. In Category A (smaller cars under 1,600 cc or 130 bhp, or EVs below 110 kW), the premium went up by SGD5,800 (RM18.510) to SGD73,801 (RM235,514).

Meanwhile, Category C (goods vehicles and buses) saw COE prices go up by SGD1,501 (RM4,790) to SGD53,002 (RM169,140), and that in Category D (for motorcycles) was also adjusted, rising to SGD10,000 (RM31,912) from SGD9,490 (RM30,284) in the previous bidding exercise.

Industry observers said that high demand as well as a tight supply of COEs would likely keep prices elevated for the rest of the year. One said that the high COE prices reflected the number of wealthy people in Singapore who were not really affected by the COE price and were willing to part with large sums of money to get a car.

Most expect that COE prices to remain in the current price range until the end of the year, with some predicting that some potential buyers are likely to wait until COE prices drop before making a purchase, the report added. While demand for larger cars in Category B is strong, buyers of such vehicles in the lower-end of the category could be deterred by rising COE prices.

“A Toyota Camry is already SGD180,000 (RM574,418) to SGD190,000 (RM606,330). So, if it goes any further, the Camry’s going to shoot beyond SGD200,000 (RM638,243). Previously, you could buy a Mercedes-Benz E-Class with that amount. Buyers of Japanese cars are not going to pay that price,” independent car broker Steven Lim told the newspaper.

A COE is a quota licence that is required to own and drive a vehicle in Singapore, and grants the legal right of the holder to register, own and use a vehicle in the republic for a period of 10 years. It is typically factored into the price of the vehicle being sold.

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