Among cars, Teslas are not something you expect to see often in Malaysia. Nor is its famed autopilot feature, even if there are third-party kits that give the feature to other local cars. But even if it was a common thing, it’s not necessarily legal, as it turns out.
A Singaporean couple went viral for their series of TikTok videos showing them driving their Tesla Model 3 on autopilot in Malaysia. Guang Ming Daily quotes Bukit Aman Traffic Investigations and Enforcement chief assistant director Superintendent Bakri Zainal Abidin as saying that the act was considered a violation of traffic laws. More specifically, the incident will be investigated under the Land Transport Act 1987.
According to the report, Bakri says that while Malaysia has no laws against automated driving systems, these features allow drivers to be distracted while on the road. He also mentions that while the Autopilot feature is helpful, but it doesn’t mean that drivers can completely let the car drive itself.
Bakri also mentions a couple of accidents in the US involving Tesla Model S cars on their Autopilot driving modes. One of them ran a red light and hit another car, and another crashed into a tree and killed two men.