COE prices mostly higher as car demand rebounds

Certificate of entitlement premiums ended higher in the first round of bidding for this month except for prices for commercial vehicles.
Certificate of entitlement premiums ended higher in the first round of bidding for this month except for prices for commercial vehicles. PHOTO: ST FILE

Certificate of entitlement (COE) premiums ended mostly higher in the first round of bidding for this month, which closed yesterday.

The biggest jump was for cars up to 1,600cc and 130bhp, which closed at $38,830. This is an increase of about 5.5 per cent from $36,810.

Mr Ron Lim, general manager of Nissan agent Tan Chong Motors, said the COE price for these smaller cars during the last round of bidding two weeks ago hit a "sweet spot" for buyers.

"The price hit a threshold that buyers felt comfortable coming in," he said, adding that this resulted in the higher prices for this tender.

COE premiums for motorcycles advanced to $8,009, up 4.5 per cent from $7,667.

Prices for the open category COE - which can be used for any vehicle type except motorcycles, but is mostly used for bigger cars-finished at $39,000, up from $38, 801.

COE prices for cars above 1,600cc or 130bhp saw the smallest increase, going up by just one dollar to close at $39,001.

The higher prices show that the demand for vehicles is bouncing back, after dropping slightly during Chinese New Year, said Yong Lee Seng Motor managing director Raymond Tang.

"We see more people in the showrooms, both for new cars as well as for used models," he said.

Only the COE prices for commercial vehicles showed a decrease, dipping 2.3 per cent to $36,003 from $36,859.

However, the price decrease is marginal, said Mr Lim, noting that COE premiums for commercial vehicles were higher earlier this year.

This could be a result of small and medium-sized enterprises re-opening after the Chinese New Year break and buying vehicles once again, stemming a sharper decline in prices, he said.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 08, 2018, with the headline 'COE prices mostly higher as car demand rebounds'. Print Edition | Subscribe