LCGC and the Rise of the Middle Class is a Recipe for Traffic Nightmare.... and Fuel Crisis

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

A few days ago I read a news about a new car called as Low Cost Green Car produced by one of the world biggest car manufacturer, named Toyota Agya and Daihastu Ayla. Well if you havent read it, just google it. As far as I know, LCGC is government’s policy, which excludes the luxury tax on such cheap and environmentally friendly cars by between 25 percent and 100 percent. In short, the government gives incentive for manufacturer to produce and sell car which must fulfill the requirement this category.

Daihatsu Ayla, the LCGC (photo from JakartaGlobe)
In a big metropolitan city such as Jakarta, which daily dose of traffic jam is at very frustrating level, addition for potentially another thousands of city cars is not going to help the traffic jam. Agya and Ayla, which designed to be sold at a rather cheap price and low tax, I'm sure it will be a massive hit here in Indonesia, especially Jakarta. And with that addition of high numbers of new cars each month, how in earth the city road will cope with its traffic? Presuming that still many older cars are still there in the market and of course in the road?

With the rise of the middle class economy, inline with that so called Indonesian / Asian economic boom, the number of people who can afford to buy this car will continue to grow, and the tendency for having a car parked in the garage is so high because here the society still consider the ownership is a way to get a social status. Well, with the quality and efficiency of mass public transport are still low, we can assume that the number of car passing by each day in the road will continue to arise, maybe in a steep rate.

That two combination, the rather cheap price city car, promoted as economically and environmentally friendly car and the rising number of people who have enough money and lifestyle to afford it, will resulted to a booming number of this small city car. The local fuel price is not helping either, with government still subsidized a lot for fuel price, a litre of standard fuel (Premium) is sold at Rp6000, less than half a euro, I believe many car owner here in Indonesia will consider this as affordable.

As I mentioned before, how can the road traffic, especially in Big Cities such as Jakarta will cope to this? Now just I mentioned the fuel thing, environmentally friendly aside, logically the more car drives in the street, there will be more fuel consumed, therefore, is not really a fuel/energy saving move by the govt and the society, however the green the car is. More road traffic plus more fuel consumed. Wow, how long this nation and its citizen can cope with that in the long run?

So what I suggested here? Buying and owning a car is not really I'm against with. People can do whatever they want, or buy, is their money, not mine. But road and fuel/energy things is a matter that really affect public. In my point of view, cheap and environmentally friendly car is not a good idea, in fact, it could be worse than more expensive and more powerful car. Maybe it will be better if, the mass public transport is going better and more efficient. More people moving in a single machine. Well, wont it will be far more better if the mass public transportation is a cheap and environmentally friendly, eh?

-Forgive me for grammar mistakes-



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