BANGKOK - Isuzu revealed its all-new MU-X SUV in Thailand on Wednesday and if first impressions are anything to go by, it looks like a more formidable rival to the likes of the Toyota Fortuner, Ford Everest and Mitsubishi Pajero Sport.
Of course, this new MU-X is based on the latest-generation Isuzu D-Max bakkie, which will be built in South Africa from early 2022 onwards. However, we are still awaiting confirmation on Isuzu’s local plans for the new SUV.
While it shares its basic ladder frame chassis with the new D-Max, Isuzu has done more to differentiate the exterior styling this time, with completely unique frontal styling and a body that shows no resemblance to its pick-up cousin.
As is the norm with this class of vehicle, the bakkie’s leaf spring rear suspension also makes way for a comfier coil spring set-up at the back.
The engine range carries over from the D-Max, with the most exciting option being the revised 3-litre turbodiesel unit that produces 140kW at 3600rpm and 450Nm between 1600 and 2600 revs. Isuzu is also offering a 110kW, 350Nm 1.9-litre unit in Thailand, although it’s likely that SA will only get the 3-litre.
The cabin is fairly similar to the one we see in new D-Max, with the centre piece being a new 23cm touchscreen infotainment system, but the trimmings and materials in the MU-X look a bit more luxurious and Isuzu has also thrown in a mood lighting system.
The SUV also offers seven seats, which offer a wide range of adjustment, and that sure beats the skimpy jump seats that you’ll find in one of its rivals..
You can expect the new Isuzu MU-X to come with more in the way of advanced driver assistance gadgets too.
Watch this space for more information as it becomes available.