SmartTagA new toll gantry system will undergo testing at the Lebuhraya Damansara Puchong’s Sungai Penchala Toll Plaza from November 2008 onwards.

Highway Authority director-general Datuk Mohamad Razali Othman says the new toll gantry system is more efficient compared to the existing infrared-based SmartTag system as there are no boom gates that force motorists to slow down.

The trial will be sponsored by Mitsubishi and will use a new microwave-based onboard-unit that is claimed to be able to detect motorists passing through the toll gantry even at speeds of up to 180km/h. The trial will begin with one lane that will accept existing SmartTag systems and the new microwave-based trial units.

Because of the smoother traffic flow the new gantry is expected to allow up to 2,000 cars through an hour, compared to the current SmartTag system which only can only allow between 800 to 1,000 cars an hour.

There’s just one issue though – since there are no boom gates, motorists without the SmartTag system or the new microwave-based unit can just drive through without paying. Datuk Mohamad Razali says they are still figuring out how to go after such cases.