Published on October 30th, 2023 | by Subhash Nair


How Do New Tesla Customers Transfer Their Existing Number Plate?

Tesla customer in Malaysia points out that Tesla Malaysia won’t help at all.

We recently came across a post on the Facebook Group “Tesla Owners Malaysia” that highlighted a pretty unique situation. A customer (the person who originally posted) has ordered a Tesla Model 3. He wants a number plate from his existing vehicle to be transferred to his new Model 3 when it’s registered. Tesla Malaysia does not have a service that will help him do this and has instead asked him to make the necessary arrangements with JPJ himself.

In Malaysia, it’s not uncommon for car buyers to purchase specific number plates for their vehicles and to sometimes transfer these plates to their next vehicle purchase. These number plates need not be special, though JPJ has an e-bidding process for certain combinations of letters and numbers. In certain cases, the plates purchased can be worth more than the market value of the car it’s tied to but often it’s just a combination of letters and numbers that’s significant to the buyer or the buyer’s family. There are official JPJ channels to move plates from an existing car to a new car, and car salesmen will often do the necessary legwork. With the introduction of Tesla to Malaysia, this has now changed.

Tesla’s arrival in Malaysia has certainly “rocked” the market in more ways than one. They are introducing aspirational and fairly well equipped electric vehicles like the Model 3 and Model Y for prices that are on the low end of the premium spectrum. That has got a lot of potential buyers very excited. Unfortunately their business model is nothing like the traditional car industry’s. Instead of showrooms and service centres operated by dealers, you have Tesla-owned “Experience Centres” in malls. Instead of Service Advisors, you have a direct sales channel online. That’s all fine and forward-thinking of the brand.

Tesla Model Y launched in Malaysia with Maybank financing

But then you have aspects that leave a lot of customers scratching their heads. First was the non-refundable RM1,000 booking fee, which seems to be a first in the country. Then we got wind of customers being asked to pay RM15,000 to secure their purchase while also not immediately being issued a receipt upon payment. Now we have this number plate situation, which essentially throws the work back in the hands of the customer – another first in the country.

Does this mean the customer will have to personally hire a low loader or arrange for a trade plate while the car is being inspected by Puspakom and registered for the plate transfer? Is it a new direction for the “runner” business to take? Will this signal JPJ to change or simplify the process and also make it easier to do online? Perhaps Tesla Malaysia will also start looking at this as a money making opportunity and adapt to Malaysian car buying culture. Right now while demand is overwhelmingly high, we don’t see this big American car company making such accommodations.

Here’s the procedure for the Exchange of Vehicle Registration Numbers from the JPJ website:

Exchange of Vehicle Registration Numbers Procedures

A vehicle registration number transfer is a process of transferring a registration number from a registered vehicle (old) to a vehicle that has not been registered (new) and providing a new registration number for the vehicle.

Application Requirements:

  1. Applications can be done by the registered owner or a representative.
  2. Both the old and new car is owned by the same person.
  3. The new car has not been registered.
  4. The old car has to undergo PUSPAKOM inspection to determine the vehicle identity. For new cars, inspection is not needed except for imported cars.
  5. The old car is not blacklisted by JPJ or PDRM.
  6. The date for e-Insuran is opened for the new car after the registration number transfer is processed.
  7. Payment for all chargeable fees.

Required Documents:

    • 2 (two) copies of  eDaftar Checklist Form.
    • 2 (two) electronic printed copies of  Form JPJ K1.
    • Identification document of applicant.
    • Inspection Report PUSPAKOM (B2) for imported vehicles or vehicles for the handicapped.
    • Copy of valid Green Diesel Vehicle Approval Certificate (SIRIM) (for green diesel vehicle).
    • K1 Custom Form (for imported vehicles).
    • Original and copy of Import License (AP) (for imported vehicles).
    • Result letter/form on reserved vehicle registration number (if applicable); and
    • Payment for all chargeable fees.
    • 2 (two) copies of  FORM JPJ K1E.
    • 2 (two) copies of  FORM JPJ K1A.
    • Identification document of applicant.
    • Original Vehicle Registration Endorsement (JPJK2).
    • Inspection Report PUSPAKOM (B2) or B5.
    • Endorsement letter from Customs (for Labuan and Langkawi).
    • Original owner’s identification document or representative’s identification document (if representative is present).

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Written work on @subhashtag on instagram. Autophiles Malaysia on Youtube.

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