Earlier this morning, Proton and smart Automobile Company signed a general distributorship agreement (GDA), which will see the former sell smart EVs in Malaysia and Thailand. In an official release, the national carmaker said the first smart vehicle – the #1 – will be launched here early in the fourth quarter of 2023.

As for Thailand, Proton deputy CEO Roslan Abdullah said in a press conference following the signing ceremony that the plan for smart to enter the Thailand market will happen sometime in the second half of 2024.

“We mentioned that Malaysia [will get the #1] in early Q4 [2023]. So, for Thailand, we’re looking somewhere in 2024, perhaps in the second half of 2024 we will enter Thailand. So, I hope the people in Thailand can wait for smart until we arrive there by mid-2024,” said Roslan.

His answer would mean that Malaysia is set to become the first country in the ASEAN region to get the #1 in right-hand drive form (it’s left-hand drive in China). The EV will also go on sale in the United Kingdom – another RHD market – this December, with deliveries set to begin in mid-2023.