The New Isuzu mu-X is On its Way
The new Isuzu mu-X is en-route to South Africa and will make landfall in the second half of 2018. This is the Glimmer Man of the SUV segment, and is set to challenge the imperious Toyota Fortuner, the dominant Ford Everest and the valiant Mitsubishi Pajero.
The mu-X houses a 3.0L, 4-cylinder, D-Teq turbodiesel engine, that produces 130kw of power and 430nm of torque sent to all-fours’ via a 6-speed automatic or manual transmission. The 4×4 derivative features a rotary drivetrain selection dial found inside the cabin, allows the driver to select 2H, 4H and 4L via a shift-on-the-fly system, of speeds up to 100km/h. In addition, the mu-X boasts an assortment of both passive and active safety features: Traction Control with ESP, ABS/EBA, hill/start assist/ and descent control. The 7-seater mu-X SUV, features a body-on-frame configuration, atop the same platform as the Isuzu KB Bakkie, features a 5-link coil-spring suspension set-up with a stabilizer-bar in the rear, an independent coil springs suspension, with upper-to-lower wishbones, and a stabiliser bar in the front: provides an exceptional ride comfort, car-like handling – better suited for light-to-medium off-road scenarios.
There is no mistaking the quality finish of the interior, function-over-form is the order of the day and may appear dated in comparison to the interior finish of the Fortuner or the Everest. However, its capacious and utilitarian design is sure to stand-up too the harshest punishment – not forgetting Isuzu build vehicles that last. The cargo area is expansive, 878L with the third row of seats folded flat, which can double into a 1830L flat-bed loading bay. The Australian mu-X model boasts a roof-mounted, Sky Sound/8-speaker sound system, along with a roof-mounted DVD system, an extensive Infotainment system, satellite-navigation, and leather detailing in the cabin – “fingers crossed” the South African bound models will have the same features.
Wheels24 recently asked subscribers for their opinion regarding the new Isuzu mu-X The overall mood is, people are excited about the mu-X and cannot wait to meet the newcomer. Considering Isuzu’s history in S.A, some commented that the mu-X would have been a better or more preferred alternative than the Chev Trailblazer. Speaking at the Isuzu Motor’s launch, held at the Struandale Manufacturing Plant down in Port Elizabeth, President and Representative Director of Isuzu Motors Japan, Masanori Katayama said that Isuzu was committed to growing its business in South Africa. He also went onto say, “Our decision with regards to South Africa demonstrates the confidence we have in this market and also is indicative of our longer-term view that South Africa will serve as an important base for our future growth on the African continent.” Katayama is confident that Isuzu Motors South Africa will become a flagship operation for Isuzu Motors Ltd.
By Dean Joseph