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The seven-seater MU-X is the spiritual successor to the still popular Frontier SUV that went on sale here in 1998.
It is powered by Isuzu’s wellproven three-litre turbodiesel engine. The intercooled four-pot delivers 130kW and 380Nm of torque and although it won’t blow your hair back when you floor it, it has plenty of poke. The engine’s renowned reliability record is a major selling point, too. Just ask all the Isuzu lovers out there.
The engine is mated to a six-speed automatic gearbox that boasts a sequential sport mode. The 4×4 derivatives are fitted with Isuzu’s Terrain Command 4x4 system with a dial in the centre console (next to the gear lever) that offers options between 2H, 4H and 4Low.
The Isuzu rides on a fully independent suspension, with a five-link set-up at the back. Standard fare includes aluminium side-steps, 18-inch alloy wheels, privacy glass and LED rear combination lamps.
The cabin – as our families will find out – is a really comfy space. Leather trim is standard for the seats and there’s a prominent Alpine multi-function infotainment display which lives on the top the dashboard. The unit boasts a nineinch colour screen that provides access to satellite navigation, Apple CarPlay and Andriod Auto functionality. There are USB ports for front and rear-seat passengers, in addition to an auxilliary iPod input and HDMI port.
However, the Alpine unit is an optional extra and will add R14 000 to the asking price.
Electronic stability control (ESC), traction control (TCS), hill start assist (HSA), hill descent control (HDC) and ABS brakes with electronic brakeforce distribution are all standard fare. There are also dual front, side and full length curtain airbags.
The Isuzu MU-X comes standard with a five-year/120 000km bumper-to-bumper warranty and Isuzu roadside assistance and a five-year/90 000km service plan. Service intervals are pegged at 15 000km/12 months.
“There’s no need for the mask and the shotgun... GAS is for free. Pasella, gratis”
Pricing is R568 000 for the 4×2 model and R629 100 for the 4×4 derivative.