Auto spare parts record 40% hike over naira free-fall, multiple charges
Dealers and consumers alike are lamenting the galloping spike in the landing cost of automotive spare parts that has increased by at least 40 to 100 per cent in the last couple of weeks.
The upsurge in prices, on account of the protracted foreign exchange crisis, port charges and logistics, robbed consumers of purchasing power and deprived dealers of patronage.
The prices of automobile engines and auto accessories are rising at an alarming rate as the naira continues to lose its value. The galloping inflation has also affected the services of local mechanics as they have also increased charges.
Usually, a 40ft container of used spare parts at the Ports, yesterday, costs about N6m as compared to N4m it used to be in 2020.
Acting National President, Association of Nigeria Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), Dr. Kayode Farinto, who confirmed the hike in prices said depending on the type of spare parts, 40 footer of new spare parts costs about N8m now, while the same container of used spare parts costs about N6m compared to N4m for 40-footer in year 2020.
A mechanic, who usually charges about N2, 500 for servicing a vehicle, now charges N5, 000 or more for rendering such services. While also fixing a repair in a spoilt vehicle has also increased due to the high rate of inflation.
Indeed, foreign exchange scarcity has led to a spike in the prices of spare parts. For instance, in January 2020, a Toyota Highlander 2008 ‘tokunbo’ engine was N300, 000, but it now sells for around N550, 000 to N600, 000. A 2014 model of Toyota Corolla engine that was between N320, 000 to N330, 000 now sells for N500, 000 and N600,000.
Similarly, a brand new Winda tyre 18 inches 245/45r18 costs N40,000 as compared to N25,000, another tyre from Austone for 15inches 31X10.50R15 costs N45,000 as compared to N30,000. Also 18 Inches Ilink Tyre 245/60r18 is currently sold for N45,000, which costs N25,000, while Winda Tyre 235/50r19 is sold for N49,000 instead of N27, 000 in the past.
For batteries, a Solite brand new battery 12V 75ahms now sells for N40,000 as compared to N20,000, while a Solite 62ah automotive battery sells for N35,000 instead of N26,000. While Rocket, Everstart, Solite and Sebang Korean Batteries are sold between N33,000 and N35, 0000 now, it used to be sold for N12, 000 to N15,000 in the previous years.
A Toyota Camry 2005 front shock absorber, sells in the range of N30,000 to N35,000, which was previously sold at N10,000 to N15,000. A steering pump for Toyota Camry 2003 – 2011 model currently sells at N25,000 as compared to N15,000 in the past. New steering pump for Toyota Camry 2003 – 2011 model is currently sold at N40,000 in place of N25, 000.
A spare parts dealer, Ifeanyichukwu Darlington, said the increase in prices of parts is due to “naira devaluation” as well as the cost of shipping.
Darlington said: “A Corolla 2014 engine used to cost N500, 000. During the COVID-19 period, the price was around N300, 000. But a complete engine with full accessories used to cost N600, 000. But it is now N1 million.”
He said Lexus RX 350 engine and gear, which used to be N900, 000, is now about N1.3 million.
The air conditioner compressor for Corolla 2008, 2010 model currently sells for N38,000 instead of between N15, 000 and N18, 000. AC compressor for Toyota 2.7 Camry 07/09 currently sells at N38,000, which ordinarily cost N25, 000. AC Compressor for Toyota Camry 2010 model is sold for N55,000 instead of N30, 000.
Another auto dealer, Kingsley, said: “Look at my shop, it is empty. If you sell two engines, you cannot buy one with the money. If you buy an engine and gearbox for N700, 000, for instance, the next time you go to the warehouse, you will add more money to buy one.
“Things are hard now. If it was when the market was booming, you would see people buying items and even supplying workshops across the country. Now, traders are less busy because there are no customers,” he said.
A motorist, Samuel Adenugba, who regularly carries out checks on his vehicle, said he has resorted to driving only on weekends to minimise issues with the car.
He said the cost of spare parts in the market has skyrocketed; driving on a daily basis has to be reduced to weekends.
For Ope Falase, a motorist, he said coping with repairs had not been easy.
“Last week, we still spent over a hundred thousand fixing an issue on my wife’s car. Basically, what I do is to prioritise the repairs needed. If it is a repair that will totally affect the functionality of the car, then I’ll fix it. If it’s not a major repair, then I might just wait till I am buoyant enough to do it.”