Pretoria - Isuzu Motors South Africa chief executive Michael Sacke expects the group’s Japanese parent company to make a decision this year about the manufacture in South Africa of the replacement model to its current D-Max bakkie.
Sacke said they had been producing the D-Max, previously named the KB, since 2012 and it was starting to get to the end of its life cycle.
He said the successor to the current model would first be launched in Thailand, probably by the end of this year, before being rolled out to other markets. Sacke said the local division was still negotiating with Isuzu Motors Japan and awaiting its approval to manufacture the new model in South Africa.
“Africa is the future for these types of vehicles (bakkies) and we need a replacement, because our competitors are replacing their models. Ford has just launched the new Ranger, Toyota is expected to replace the Hilux in 2021 or 2022 and Nissan will eventually change the Hardbody.
“We have to stay competitive, and to stay competitive we need to change our model. A decision would have to be made on South Africa (producing the new model) this year,” he said.