Compact-sized sports utility vehicles are gaining much popularity this year for their reasonable price and technical specifications. SUVs took up 15.5% of the entire sales of top five domestic carmakers for the first four months of this year, overtaking mid-size sedans as the most sold vehicles in the market. Compact SUVs, in particular, were the most popular type, accounting for 38.1% of the entire SUV sales. Industry experts attribute their rising popularity to a recent reduction in the special consumption tax, which has led more consumers to buy cars under 30 million won with the savings of over 800,000 won.
For a consumer to buy a car with the budget of about 20 million won, the base price of a car plus any options needs to be below 19 million won since a consumer needs to pay additional fees of about 1.2 million won, including acquisition tax, registration tax, public funds, certificate stamp, license plate, and consignment, according to the car industry on Monday. Representative Hyundai compact SUV models that fall within the range include the Venue Smart and Modern. Consumers can add various options of up to 4 million won since the Venue Smart starts with 15 million won. As for the mid-level trim Venue Modern, it will cost only 18.33 million won including the blind-spot collision warning with rear cross-traffic collision warning feature.
GM Korea’s New Trax LS trim sells between 17.48 million won and 18.06 million won when applying the special consumption tax cut for passenger cars. Considering various registration fees, consumers can add options of at least 700,000 won. The 1.6 GTe SE trim of Renault Samsung’s new SUV model XM3 sells below 20 million won even including various taxes and the initial car insurance fees, according to the carmaker.
SsangYong Motor’s best-selling model Tivoli V1 is affordable at 18.58 million won including the smart mirroring feature, which connects the driver’s smartphone to the navigation system. If consumers can spend over 20 million won, their options expand to GM Korea’s Trailblazer and Hyundai’s Kona Smart.
Cars under 20 million won do not mean they lack in features. The XM3 comes with features, including automatic parking brake, one-touch power windows, paddle shift, and LED headlamp. The Trailblazer is equipped with the latest turbo engine with the electronic control unit and has the automatic folding side mirrors available as an option.
“There is a stereotype that cars below 20 million won have practically no features. But these cars are equipped with basic features and consumers will be able to save at least 800,000 won and add options of their own,” said an industry official. “There are a lot of SUV models to choose from with the budget of 20 million won if you don’t insist on higher trims.”