Isuzu turns 40

Go! Camp & Drive - - News -

The year 1978 was an in­ter­est­ing one for South Africa. The "Groot Krokodil" took over from John Vorster as prime min­is­ter of South Africa, Mar­garet Gar­diner was crowned Miss Uni­verse, and the first Isuzu bakkie rolled off the Kemp­ston Road plant in Port El­iz­a­beth. The 1.6 ℓ petrol ver­sion cost R3 485 back then, and the 2.0 ℓ diesel an eye-wa­ter­ing R4 295. “Over the years, Isuzu ve­hi­cle assem­bly ex­pe­ri­enced many changes. We started pro­duc­tion at the Kemp­ston Road plant, where we pro­duced five gen­er­a­tions, and then moved to the more mod­ern Struan­dale plant,” says Jo­han Ver­meulen, Isuzu’s man­u­fac­tur­ing and sup­ply chain ex­ec­u­tive. Isuzu bakkies were in­no­va­tive from the start. They of­fered the first rack and pin­ion steer­ing and in­de­pen­dent front sus­pen­sion in a bakkie, and built the first dou­ble cab in the coun­try. Over 600 000 Isuzu bakkies have been built in South Africa, and some of the very first ones are still be­ing used to­day. Happy birth­day, Isuzu!

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