COE prices for car categories down in latest tender; premium for motorcycles hits new high of $11,589

Commercial vehicle COE prices went up, but those for car COE categories were down. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Certificate of entitlement (COE) premiums for motorcycles hit a new record of $11,589 in the latest tender exercise that closed on Wednesday.

Commercial vehicle COE prices also went up, but those for car COE categories were down.

The motorcycle COE premium was 2.5 per cent higher than the $11,301 set in the last tender and broke the record of $11,400 set in March 2022.

For cars with engines up to 1,600cc and below 130bhp, as well as fully electric vehicles (EVs) with up to 110 kilowatts of power, the COE price is $84,000, down 2.3 per cent from $86,000.

In the category for more powerful cars and EVs, the COE price ended at $108,051, down 4.4 per cent from $113,000.

For commercial vehicles, the COE premium went up by 3.1 per cent, from $64,989 to $67,001.

Open category COEs, which can be used to register any type of vehicle other than motorcycles, ended at $107,201, down $6,098 from $113,299, representing a change of 5.4 per cent.

Commercial vehicle COE premiums have been rising throughout 2022, with the exception of the first tender in May. 

The high COE prices have a direct impact on the cost of business, especially those which are expanding their commercial fleet as economic activity picks up.

Motorcycles are used by people for transport as well as for their livelihood - by those who are in food delivery services, for example. 

The latest tender was the second time that motorcycle COEs broke records in 2022.

Mr Rex Tan, president of the Singapore Motor Cycle Trade Association, said motorcycle buyers are taking on longer loan contracts to keep their monthly instalments manageable due to the higher prices as COE premiums rise.

Given that there are little signs of more motorcycle COEs being released for tender, he does not expect premiums to come down any time soon.

Category Current COE premium ($) Previous COE premium ($)
A - Car (1,600cc & below) 84,000 86,000
B - Car (above 1,600cc) 108,051 113,000
C - Goods vehicle & bus 67,001 64,989
D - Motorcycle 11,589 11,301
E - Open 107,201 113,299

Car dealers, on the other hand, breathed a sigh of relief as premiums softened for the two types of car COEs as well as in the Open category, which mostly ends up being used to register cars. 

At the same time, they said that the tender exercise also reflects how weak the demand for cars has been during this period.

Buyers of larger and more powerful cars and EVs may be holding back after COE premiums for such vehicles hit record highs in the past two tenders.

In the tender for COEs in this category, there were just 82 more bids received than what were available. This was the first time in 2022 that the number of excess bids in this category dropped below three digits. This means that there are not many orders taken for cars in this category.

Following the latest tender results, car dealers would likely be advertising lower prices.

Mr Ng Choon Wee, group commercial director at Komoco Motors, expects that car companies will be taking the opportunity over the next few days to follow up on prospective customers to close deals. 

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