Sharp Increase in Automobile Imports to Brazil in Q1

Automotive Author: Notrice Apr 12, 2024 06:04 PM (GMT+8)

EqualOcean has learned that in the first quarter of 2024, the import of automobiles to Brazil saw a significant increase, mainly driven by a large number of electric vehicles from China.


According to data released by the Brazilian Ministry of Development, Industry, Trade, and Services on Thursday, passenger car imports to Brazil increased by 46.4% year-on-year from January to March, reaching a total of $1.5 billion.

Among them, Chinese cars accounted for approximately 40% of the total imports, marking a 450% increase compared to the same period in 2023. Saulo Castro, coordinator of statistics at the ministry, pointed out that the growth was primarily driven by pure electric and hybrid vehicles from China.

Since 2015, the import tax on electric vehicles in Brazil has been reduced to zero. However, to promote the development of the domestic automotive industry, Brazilian President Lula decided to reintroduce import taxes on electric vehicles this year.

Starting from January, the import duty for pure electric vehicles was set at 10%, which will increase to 18% in July and ultimately reach 35% in July 2026. In addition, the import tax for hybrid vehicles started at 15% this year, will increase to 25% in July, and reach 35% in July 2026.

With the continuous expansion of the Brazilian new energy vehicle market and the unleashing of its potential, more and more international automotive manufacturers and new energy technology companies are beginning to pay attention to and invest in this market. Globally, new energy vehicles have become an important development trend in the automotive industry, and Brazil is actively following up and accelerating this trend.

In September last year, Uallace Moreira, an official from the Brazilian Ministry of Industry, revealed that Brazil would cancel the tax exemption policy for imported electric vehicles and plan to gradually increase tariffs to 35% over the next three years. This decision sparked intense discussions between Brazilian automakers and Chinese electric vehicle manufacturers.

EqualOcean has learned that the motivation behind the Brazilian government's cancellation of the tax exemption policy for imported electric vehicles is to protect the interests of the domestic automotive industry. Brazilian automakers believe that the relatively low prices of imported electric vehicles, combined with the overall low sales of electric vehicles in the domestic market, pose significant competitive pressure on domestic manufacturers.

Chinese electric vehicle manufacturers have long begun to establish a presence in the Brazilian market. Chery(奇瑞), as the sales leader of Chinese electric vehicles in Brazil, has introduced multiple hybrid models. BYD (比亚迪)has been operating in Brazil since December 2021, with its entry-level models becoming popular in this segment. Great Wall(长城)also entered the Brazilian market in January 2022 with a full range of electric products.