Eleven new UN regulations on vehicle lighting and signalling to be enforced in 2017, including DRLs

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A couple of months ago we attended a Malaysia Automotive Institute-Society of Automotive Engineers technical talk on tyre-related UN regulations and standards; now we’ve just come back from one on those pertaining to vehicle lighting and signalling.

Eleven new UN regulations on lighting and signalling are set to be enforced on July 1, 2017, to join the 22 lighting regulations and one Malaysian Standard (MS ISO 303 Installation of Lighting and Signalling Devices for Motor Vehicles and Their Trailers) already in force for new vehicle type approvals (VTA) in Malaysia.

Included in the aforementioned 11 are R87 Daytime Running Light, R128 LED Light Sources and R123 Adaptive Front Lighting Systems, while an additional two – R31 Halogen Sealed Beam Headlamps and R88 Motorcycle Retroreflective Tyres – are set to be gazetted on July 1, 2017 for enforcement in 2020.

You will recognise R88 from the earlier talk on tyre-related regulations, but the desire to gazette R31 will no doubt raise a few eyebrows – sealed-beam headlamps are a very rare sight on today’s roads, but according to Road Transport Department (JPJ) automotive engineering division assistant director Arif Fahmi Abdul Wahab, this ensures the regulations span more vehicle types.

A total of 10 lighting-related UN regulations came into force at the start of the year, namely R4 Illumination of Rear Registration Plates, R19 Front Fog Lamps, R23 Reversing Lamps, R37 Filament Lamps, R38 Rear Fog Lamps, R45 Headlamp Cleaners, R48 Installation of Lights (non-HID), R77 Parking Lamps, R91 Side Marker Lamps and R119 Cornering Lamps.

You’ll notice two R48s in the list – the 06-series (enforced three years ago) covers HID installation, while the recently-enforced 03-series covers the installation of all other lights.

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As such, the 03-series R48 is an important regulation here where VTAs are concerned – on top of meeting their respective spec requirements, all lighting and signalling components must conform to R48, which takes into account the dimensions of the vehicle(s) they are fitted to. Alternatively, the components may satisfy Malaysian Standard MS ISO 303.

Basic lighting and signalling components must also satisfy the specifications set out in Kaedah-kaedah Kenderaan Motor (Pembuatan & Pengunaan) 1959 – these cover head and tail lamps, brake lights, reflectors, directional indicators as well as side and marker lamps for heavy goods vehicles. Parameters include colour, number of light units, beam distance and area, frequency (indicator flashes), visibility and their location(s) in relation to the vehicle and the road.

An aside on VTAs – it was revealed at the talk that from July 1, 2017, the product labelling mandatory for Puspakom inspections of CBU vehicles should include the manufacturer’s name, VTA certificate serial number, VIN and chassis numbers, Gross Vehicle Weight, Gross Combination Weight (where the vehicle is used for towing), plus front and rear axle load ratings.

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This information must be displayed on a plate or sticker at a suitable, visible and legible location anywhere on the vehicle, but it is not known yet if the label must comply with the format shown above.

There exist 133 UN regulations in total under the World Forum for Harmonisation of Vehicle Regulations (WP29) – the aim is to incorporate a total of 126 into Malaysian law by 2020, JPJ automotive engineering director Ir Haji Mohamad Dalib said previously.

At present, a total of 77 UN regulations (78 if you count the double R48) are already in force for the type approval of new vehicles in Malaysia. These include ECE R94 (40% front overlap crash testing), ECE R95 (side impact crash testing), ECE R66 (bus, coach and truck superstructure strength and roll-over testing) and ECE R43 (safety glass installation and testing). Most, if not all of them, are concerned with vehicle and occupant safety.

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Malaysia was accepted by the UN on April 4, 2006 as a signatory to the 1958 Agreement on Reciprocal Recognition and 1998 Agreement on Global Technical Regulations, under WP29. As a result, Malaysia may test and certify an automotive product and export that product to 51 contracting nations without the need for further testing. These products will bear the stamp ‘E52’, which can be issued by JPJ.

Arif revealed previously that there are plans for Malaysia to sign the 1997 Agreement Concerning the Adoption of Uniform Conditions for Periodical Technical Inspections, which could pave the way for standardised periodic vehicle inspections, such as the Voluntary Vehicle Inspection proposed in NAP 2014.

Note that these UN regulations only apply where that component or system is on the vehicle in question, to ensure they adhere to specification – it does not mean, for instance, that new vehicles must have cornering lamps, headlamp washers, DRLs or fog lamps in order to be type-approved in Malaysia.

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Jonathan James Tan

While most dream of the future, Jonathan Tan dreams of the past, although he's never been there. Fantasises much too often about cruising down Treacher Road (Jalan Sultan Ismail) in a Triumph Stag that actually works, and hopes this stint here will snap him back to present reality.



  • donno on Feb 12, 2015 at 12:13 pm

    To all road users. Please be aware of your rights.

    These regulations only applicable to new vehicles that are VTA’ed after the enforcement date. Any old cars that are currently on the road should not be needed to comply and should not be summoned based on these regulations.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 45 Thumb down 2
    • Same L0rrrr on Feb 12, 2015 at 1:40 pm

      Typical Sendiri Cakap, Sendiri Syok.

      When 2020 is coming, nothing is done (but fund is spent).

      Proton Hybrid is one hell of the great example!

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 18 Thumb down 23
  • john error on Feb 12, 2015 at 12:16 pm

    JUAK… what the?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 4
    • ProtonGSC on Feb 12, 2015 at 12:34 pm

      MAI/MAA/ MITI just know how to implement new way to increase taxes and keep the cronies profit.

      Latest newspaper even mention “AUS and US Trade Minister” dissapointed on Malaysia policies and rules.

      What’s the true propose of MAA to Malaysian (Rakyat)? And Government that protect Cronies Rights?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 28 Thumb down 18
      • MAI Buat apa Bang? on Feb 12, 2015 at 3:31 pm

        MAI, MAA and MITI are good for nothing. Safety, they don’t do anything. Proton was being sold for over 15 years before they even introduced airbags. But globally, airbags were compulsory more than 20 years already.

        Yet MITI, MAI and MAA allowed Proton to sell cars without airbags becaue to them making $$$$ is more important than Malaysian lives.

        MAI for example is a Bogus organisation. All they do is come out with charts and seminars but do real nothing for the car industry. They get paid big money monthly to do nothing and travel business class all around the world to learn about cars.

        Ask the MAI people about the above UN regulations, they have no clue. But MAI staff all will fly business class all around the world in big rombongans to study car matters.

        But study what MAI?

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 25 Thumb down 7
        • kadajawi (Member) on Feb 13, 2015 at 12:44 am

          I don’t know about other countries, but airbags aren’t compulsory in Germany at this point. From what I know that is also true for the rest of Europe. It is possible to sell new cars without airbags in Germany. Mercedes sells a car that in baseline variant has 1 airbag. The reason why most cars in Germany come as standard with 6 airbags is because customers demand it. In Malaysia customers don’t care, so manufacturers won’t provide.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1
  • No Lights on Feb 12, 2015 at 12:31 pm

    They can’t even enforce motorcyclist to have lights. How many of you have encounter motorcyclist without front and rear lights? I wonder how much a light bulb must have cost to prevent them from replacing the faulty one.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 49 Thumb down 3
    • BoringRakyat on Feb 12, 2015 at 2:38 pm

      A single bulb cost Rm 5 ( Depends on the waltz and brand ). Sometimes RM 5 is big amount to someone. Of course if it was me , i would not risk my life for RM 5 but yeah.. just stating my opinion. Peace

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 4
    • mai.jilaka on Feb 13, 2015 at 12:01 am

      I ride kawasaki krr150 & once a year my rear bulb will go burst. each time I replace it only cost me rm2. at the bike workshop nearby my house, it only cost rm1 for normal kapchai motor. but II’m still seeing more than 10 bike without working rear light at my resident area. I guess rm1 is more valuable than their life. sigh..

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1
  • they can have as many rules as they want but please enforce la.

    – motorcyclist beating traffic lights left right centre.
    – motorcyclist with illegal number plates (cars too)
    – people with illegal HIDs installed
    – DRL in which are on even when headlights are on
    – misaligned headlights.
    – non-working tail lamps.

    Just enforce existing rules first la.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 60 Thumb down 0
  • BLT_CLUB on Feb 12, 2015 at 1:02 pm

    DRL? Seriously? After a century of motoring we need headlights during the day? stupid or what?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 36
    • kadajawi (Member) on Feb 13, 2015 at 12:45 am

      It’s very useful. I live in Europe, where many cars have this, and you notice them much earlier. When I drive a car without DRL I turn on the headlights during the day.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2
  • Yes ar….?

    I remeber there’s a rule says new car min must hv 2 airbags yet the almeera can do without…

    Tell me about regulations…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 3
  • Wat about the all important VSC?
    I think it’s mandatory in Europe.. Should make it mandatory world wide

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 23 Thumb down 2
  • john error on Feb 12, 2015 at 1:13 pm


    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0
  • Why not regulate cars to have ABS, EBD, Traction Control, and Electronic Stability Controls for all vehicle as a mandatory safety equipments instead of lights?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 20 Thumb down 0
  • takNakP1 on Feb 12, 2015 at 1:43 pm

    more road blocks & more traffic jams?
    the existing basic law also can’t enforce.
    maybe the existing laws enforcing many not brings profit to the cronies… so they create new one for the cronies.. i.e. back seat, safety belt. Well they enforce installation but do the enforce wearing?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 5
    • la la ka on Feb 13, 2015 at 1:35 am

      Yes… they did enforce… but cant you read all those condemning words come from public (and I believe including you) when kena saman bcoz of that?

      And bcoz it is not popular, I believe they got a “call” to suspend their enforcement.

      And you can also see how those association acting to support the enforcement but bash and write a letter to minister to suspend the enforcement for rear seatbelt

      not only that, they are even more… lorry drawer, cameron highland pickup side railing, contour reflective marking on heavy vehicle etc… it is for safety but you yg tak mau…Then still gov juga yg salah?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0
  • They should first worry about Ahole bikers riding at night with no tail lamp

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0
  • BakKwah on Feb 12, 2015 at 1:59 pm

    BLT must be living under a rock or in Gua Tempurung all these years – DRL is already standard issue for vehicles in Europe. It’s been proven to reduce accidents and improves visibility for oncoming drivers.

    Get out of your cave bro, and check your facts before you post comments.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 20 Thumb down 0
  • awan nano on Feb 12, 2015 at 2:28 pm

    What I think is overdue is the hazard vs signal blinkers standard. When you switch on the hazard lights, you lose the turn signal indicators which can be hazardous. What I want to see is the turn signal indicator having priority. Meaning that when the hazard is on, but when you turn the signal left/right, the hazard light is suspended while the left/right signal is blinking.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 9
    • Spoilt on Feb 12, 2015 at 3:29 pm

      Turning on hazard lights implies that your vehicle has stopped in an emergency which negates the reason for using the left/right indicators.

      Please don’t drive with hazard lights on.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 24 Thumb down 1
      • awan nano on Feb 12, 2015 at 3:52 pm

        Nope. Hazard means exactly that, hazard. We are telling people around to be careful (due to some not so easily indicated situation). Hazard does not mean stopping in the emergency lane.

        Situations for driving with hazard on:
        1. Damaged vehicle limping slowly to a safer place.
        2. Vehicles too slow on the highway, such as heavy lorries.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 7
        • kucing on Feb 12, 2015 at 7:29 pm

          your wrong. hazard lights shouldn’t active while driving. i see many driver used hazard when heavy rain/fog. its will make other driver confusion. heavy lorries/peronda plus/towning will use beacon light (yellow). konvoi also must used beacon light. not hazard light.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 1
          • awan nano on Feb 12, 2015 at 11:40 pm

            Beacon light is useless on a lorry if approaching from behind. The container is taller than the beacon that it blocks the view from the rear.

            The yes or no conditions for using hazard when driving is more complicated than “absolutely not!” like what you’re stating. That’s why it’s a catch-all “hazard”. Use your brain to judge the appropriateness of use.

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3
          • kadajawi (Member) on Feb 13, 2015 at 12:52 am

            Then why when I brake hard with my Renault or Citroen the hazard lights come on? Hazard lights should also be used when you reach the end of a traffic jam, so warn the car behind you. Once you’ve got a few cars behind you turn them off again.

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2
          • la la ka on Feb 13, 2015 at 1:18 am

            Kadajawi… it is called as REAR-END COLLISION HAZARD LIGHT…. to notify vehicle behind on the hazardous situation to prevent collision…

            currently it is not mandatory items inside UN reg 48 latest series… but we will see it as mandatory item in future if working group for GRE on Forum WP29 agreed….

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0
  • Jonathan, Gregory, or Paul.. can anyone please tell us here why the Nippan Alnero can do with just ONE airbag??? The regulation requires minimum of 2 airbags isn’t it?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0
  • Ermm..what to say..i think,lorry is the right vehicle to comply this regulation..just drive at night n see how many lorry that have enough lightning to show that they are there.how many accident involve lorry at highway because of lightning?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0
    • kadajawi (Member) on Feb 13, 2015 at 12:54 am

      Not just lorry. Many bikes drive with no lights. Cars without (sometimes all brake lights are not working). Or modded lights that blind others. etc. It’s terrible in Malaysia. In all my time in Europe I have never been blinded as much as I have in Malaysia.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0
    • labix7 on Feb 13, 2015 at 9:28 am

      agree … even some lorry rear/brake light got same size like kapcai rear light too. No wonder got many accident “hentam belakang lori”. JPJ must enforce new rules to ask lorry to put more visible rear & signal lights.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0
  • car-fans on Feb 12, 2015 at 5:12 pm

    Aiyo! Cam tu pun tak faham – Tak De Project Baru – Mana Ada ‘Part Time Income’ !

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3
  • Kit Liam Kaw on Feb 12, 2015 at 7:38 pm

    Tonto cucuk JPJ pun tak settle..apa lagi mau cakap

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2
  • karipap basah on Feb 12, 2015 at 8:27 pm

    Dont worry…..this is just govt syoik syoik and hot hot chicken shit….

    After that, nobody care, nothing matter.This isnt the 1st time.

    Semua OK….

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3
    • la la ka on Feb 13, 2015 at 1:09 am

      Gov since 2006 totally serious on enforcing vehicle safety regulations by harmonizing UN Reg slowly and steadily. Currently those reg only apply to new vehicle during type approval process (before allowing that vehicle to be sell or use in Malaysia)

      But, I believe later, probably those reg would be gazetted on road transport rules for in use vehicle when the whole vehicle, public, industry and even technical services ready… plus mandatory private vehicle periodical inspection, we may see only safe vehicle on the road… perhaps at least by 2025

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0
  • Rear fog laps would make perfect sense in a country with so much rain, could we then see an end to idiots using their hazard lights in such conditions?! Probably not haha

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0
  • kapchai on Feb 13, 2015 at 9:54 am

    With all these ABS, EBD, BA, TC etc, is very good when the car is new. When the car is old, say 10 yrs old, and some of these electronics already kaput, what will happen? Bila mahu jual, Puspakom will insist that the you spend a few thousand RM to repair before can sell? Haha. Think about it

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0
  • So many issues on the road, old rust buckets, speeding lorries, lawless motorbikes, Formula 1 buses, enforce laa.
    Now new rules, good idea but no enforcement, waste of time and money.
    All the roadblocks check for road tax ONLY.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0
  • cherry on Apr 01, 2015 at 11:19 pm

    Dear Jonathan the author of this article
    Being a good journalist, especially writing this kind of article, you should do a thorough analysis!
    If you notice all the list of UN regs in your photos, and the information you wrote in previous articles and this articles on 2017 and 2020 plan, the total UN regs by 2020 is not sum up to 126.
    If 126 you said is claimed by JPJ, then you got your brain fooled already by those people. The figure for 2013-2015 is unclear. There is a photo showing 2013 total 23 regs. Then same 23 regs is listed down in 2013-15 table. Then your article says again same 23 regs (or 22) number for 2015 plan.
    1997 – 3 regs
    2007 – 12 regs
    2010 – 4 regs
    2011 – 35 regs
    2012 – 1 reg
    2013 – 23 regs?
    2015 – 23 regs?
    2017 – 19 regs
    2018 – 2 regs
    Try to sum the total.. then you will understand how inconsistent your articles have been.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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