Switching up Your Car Engine: Can You Do it in Malaysia Legally?

There are a few reasons why many change their car’s engine – it can either be because of car engine failure or simply to swap it out for a more economical or more powerful solution. If you are in the market for a new car engine, just like any other part of a car, there are rules when it comes to engine modification. In Malaysia, the Road Transport Department (JPJ) has set guidelines that you will need to follow when it comes to engine modification.

car engine

Check with JPJ Before You Modify Your Car  in Malaysia

Changing your car’s engine will require a visit to Puspakom and JPJ –  you must bring your car for a Puspakom inspection and get approval from JPJ as some modifications are illegal, while others may be subject to some hefty fines.  In general, a special Puspakom inspection, better known as the Puspakom B2 Inspection, is necessary for:

  • Private vehicles with road tax that has expired for more than three years
  • Modified vehicles (modification of car engine specifications, chassis, or vehicle body)
  • New or used imported cars that need to be registered with the JPJ
  • Change of Car Plate Number
  • Other requirements as requested by the JPJ

According to Section 12 of the Road Transport Act 1987, modifications made to any vehicles before or after registration must be done legally.  Additionally, your car may even be inspected by the Director-General at any time. 

How to Change Your Car Engine Legally in Malaysia

Now, let’s circle back to modifying your car engine. Here is a detailed guide on what needs to be done before and during your Puspakom B2 Inspection.

Types of Car Engine Change Application

There are various types of engine changes and with each type, JPJ has implemented these in specific categories. Here are the breakdowns. 

  • Category one: Engine change of the same make and capacity (cc), or with a capacity not exceeding 25 percent of the original engine* (private vehicles only).
  • Category two: Engine change of a different make or capacity that exceeds 25 percent of the original engine.
  • Category three: Engine change that involves fuel type change.
  • Category four: Engine change on Proton-made cars with Campro engines to Mitsubishi-made engine.
  • Category five: Engine change that involves changing of the gearbox (from manual to auto).
  • Category six: Engine change for commercial vehicles.

*The original engine refers to the engine mode installed in your car by the manufacturer when you first bought it. 

List of Engines that are Similar

When replacing your engine, you will need to research which engines are suitable or similar to the one you want. Here’s a list of engines that are similar based on the brands. 

Original Engine Similar Engines (Clones)
Proton
  • Mitsubishi
  • Renault (Savy, Waja 1.8)
  • Citroen (Tiara)
Perodua
  • Daihatsu
  • Toyota
Ford Mazda
Peugeot Citroen
HICOM Isuzu

* Engine change must be from the same engine model variance. Any modification on the engine mounting is strictly prohibited.

Car Engine Change Application Requirements

Here are some engine requirements that need to be addressed before an engine modification change can be applied. 

  • The change must be made according to the specified rules under the 1959 Motor Vehicle Rules (Construction and Use) L.N. 170/1959.
  • Engine modifications for category one are only applicable to motorized vehicles.
  • Applicants must submit a K1 Customs Form when the purchase of imported engines are involved.
  • If an engine is obtained or purchased from another vehicle owner, the applicant must submit an official letter confirming the sale and purchase together with the JPJK2 Registration Certificate Card (Car Grant). 
  • The overall structural integrity of the vehicle must be sound, especially the chassis frame.
  • No structural modification can be made on the front cross member, steering linkage and steering box.
  • No modification can be made on the base engine mounting and no welding can be made on the engine mounting’s additional structure.
  • Proton models apart from the Perdana and Inspira models can only have their engines changed to those with a maximum capacity not exceeding 1836cc (1.8 liter). Changes to engines with the capacity of 1997 or 1998cc (2.0 liter) can only be made on Proton Perdana and Proton Inspira.
  • The vehicle’s smoke emission opacity must not exceed 50 percent.
  • The vehicle must pass the braking system efficiency test during the inspection.

So, What are the Documents Required for Engine Modification?

Category Documents
Category one 

(Applicants are not required to apply at the Automotive Engineering Department and can simply proceed with the inspection at Puspakom). 

  • The original copy of the vehicle registration card signed by the owner
  • The original copy of the engine purchase receipt
  • The original copy of the K1 customs report
  • A confirmed sales and purchase letter (for engines purchased from other vehicles)
Category two to six 

(Applicants can directly apply at the Automotive Engineering Department for the approval letter before a Puspakom inspection)

  • Engine Change Notification Form
  • A photocopy of the vehicle registration card signed by the owner
  • A photocopy of the engine purchase receipt
  • A certified photocopy of the K1 customs report
  • A confirmed sales and purchase letter (for engines purchased from other vehicles)

After the approval letter is issued (for category two to six), the applicants must get their car inspected at Puspakom within three months of the letter’s issuance date to obtain the B2 Puspakom Inspection Report. You will need to submit additional documents for your car inspection. Here are the documents.  

  • The approval letter from the Automotive Engineering Department of JPJ
  • The original copy of the vehicle registration card signed by the owner
  • The original copy of the engine purchase receipt
  • The original copy of the K1 customs report
  • A confirmed sales and purchase letter (for engines purchased from other vehicles)

A PG10 report (for engine change that exceeds 30% of the original enginepemeriksaan khas b2 puspakom

Getting  Puspakom B2 Inspection Report for Engine Change

Here are the detailed steps that need to be taken to get a Puspakom B2 Inspection Report for Engine Change. 

Get Your Car Inspected at Your Nearest Puspakom

You are advised to provide the following documents for a smoother inspection process:

  • Original Vehicle Registration Card/Vehicle Ownership Certificate (VOC)
  • K1 Customs Form

If the modification of the new engine involves sales and purchase from family members,  friends or close acquaintances, a sworn affidavit is required to replace the K1 Customs Form. This car will undergo two stages of inspection at Puspakom which are: 

  • Brake Test: Check brake performance including brake efficiency and brake imbalance. The applicant will then receive a VR1 report and a fee of RM35 will be charged.
  • Overall Test: The overall inspection involves the identification of the registration number, chassis and engine, etc. The applicant will then receive a B2 report and a fee of RM25 will be charged.

Approval from JPJ (For Category two to six)

For situations that fall under category two to six, applicants are required to get an approval from the officer in charge at the Automotive Engineering Division before their car gets inspected at Puspakom. 

Update Your Car’s Information

After obtaining the approval from Puspakom, the applicant must update their latest car information (new engine modification) at their nearest JPJ branch or office. Here are the documents required to update your car’s information at JPJ:

  • Completed K8 Form
  • Applicant’s Identity Card (MyKad)
  • Special Inspection Report B2 Puspakom
  • Vehicle Ownership Letter (VOC)

Proses tukar enjin kereta di Puspakom

image source: Puspakom

So, before you modify parts of your car, it’s always safer to do your research if that particular modification is legal in Malaysia – otherwise, you may be subject to a summon. With that, we hope your modification applications go smoothly. 

Note: Information relating to the types of engine, the requirements, and steps to change your car engine from this article is sourced from JPJ’s official website.

Also Read : Changing Your Car Paint Colour in Malaysia

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