Three cylinders, six digits: A Tale of High-Powered Engines
Purchasing a fun car in Europe is becoming increasingly challenging. In addition to increased prices by automakers, hefty taxes based on the vehicle’s CO2 emissions have been implemented by governments. For instance, in The Netherlands, a Honda Civic Type R will set you back a staggering €88,560 in 2024. France is not exempt from this trend either, as seen with the Toyota GR Yaris.
The cost of the new hatchback, equipped with a six-speed manual transmission, begins at €46,300 – hardly a budget-friendly option. However, that is not the only issue. In fact, purchasers will essentially end up forking over twice the initial price in order to have the three-cylinder powerhouse parked in their own garage. The reason behind this steep price hike? The turbocharged 1.6-liter gas engine produces a concerning 190 grams/kilometer of emissions according to WLTP standards. And as recently observed by Caradisiac, customers will need to allocate an additional expense of €45,990 solely for the CO2 tax. In essence, this brings the final cost of the vehicle to be equivalent to that of a Toyota vehicle.
Fans of the legendary rally-inspired hatchback will be disappointed to find out that it comes with a hefty price tag of €92,290. Converted into US dollars, this amounts to almost $100,000. The cost is even more exorbitant for the automatic version, as shown on Toyota France’s listing of the eight-speed GR Yaris at €48,800. Opting for the automatic transmission results in increased CO2 emissions of 210 g/km, leading to an outrageous additional tax fee of €60,000. This brings the total cost to a staggering €108,800 (around $117,300).
Toyota France is showing a sense of positivity towards the potential success of the GR Yaris, as it has allocated 300 vehicles for sale in the domestic market.
The first thing to mention is that the emissions-related tax in France has significantly increased for 2024 when compared to previous years. As stated by a recent report, the penalty for the GR Yaris with a manual transmission will be €45,990 in 2024, which is a notable increase from the “only” €14,881 in 2023 and €12,012 in 2022. Similarly, the automatic model will face a tax of €60,000 this year, whereas it was only €31,063 in 2023 and €26,247 in 2022.
In France, individuals purchasing vehicles with carbon dioxide emissions of 117 g/km or less are exempt from an additional tax. However, for every gram above that limit, a €50 surcharge is applied, with the maximum amount reaching €60,000 for cars emitting 194 g/km or more. A comprehensive list of the various tax rates can be found here.
Regarding Toyota’s other exciting vehicles, brace yourself. The tax for the GR86 reaches a cap of €60,000, regardless of whether you choose the manual version priced at €33,900 or the automatic model priced at €35,700 due to its emissions exceeding 194 g/km. This inflates the total cost to €93,900 and €95,700 for the two versions, respectively. It is astounding that the tax alone is nearly double the listed price of the car.
The emissions tax for the Supra 2.0 is set at €4,543, which pushes its price from €53,600 to €58,143. The more powerful six-cylinder edition has a starting price of €65,600, with an additional €28,413 in taxes, making it a total of €94,013.
The implementation of higher taxes in European Union nations is a significant contributor to the downsizing movement. It has prompted automakers to develop ambitious strategies for electrification. The EU has announced their intention to prohibit the sale of vehicles that emit pollutants by the year 2035, unless adjustments are made, as proposed by Porsche’s top financial officer, Lutz Meschke.
The GR Yaris is unavailable for purchase in the United States, but we believe it could potentially be much more affordable here. This is not only because there are no comparable emissions taxes, but also because Europeans are subject to a value added tax (VAT) of 20% in France. It seems sensible that the GR Yaris would have a lower price point than the $36,500 GR Corolla. If only Toyota would consider introducing it to the US market, as fewer and fewer Europeans can afford it at current prices…