In a refreshingly relaxed ‘launch’ yesterday, Isuzu NZ’s GM Murray Greenhalgh talked us through their new and improved MU-X (RF20) 7 seat SUV.
The MU-X has been a popular part of the Isuzu range for around 3 years (constituting 10% of their sales). Its customer pool comes from existing Isuzu owners, serious 4WD people and last (but not least) it’s a hit with people that need to tow. ‘It’s a heavy vehicle that loves to tow, it will happily pull 3,000kg’s day in day out’ Murray said.
‘Because of their Japanese philosophy, it’s simply a case of multiple running changes in the factory is the way they conduct their business’ he said ‘They are not big on model changes. This vehicle is not referred to as a model change, but as a big running change’
He went on to walk us around the vehicle. It comes in 5 different colour options with a new Havana Brown. Front bumper, bonnet and grille have been restyled; it now has day-time running lights, LED projector lamps, auto levelling headlights and a bigger spoiler at the rear. Narrow “A” Pillars for improved visibility, 18” alloy wheels and side steps as standard (as is the increased underbody Protection).
There is more padding around the vehicle’s interior giving it greater Sound proofing/noise suppression. A new dash, new Instrument cluster, new steering wheel (still has the Isuzu badge in the middle), and new Chrome/high gloss piano black throughout the cabin – Seat trim is leather too.
Under the bonnet is a 3L, Isuzu 4JJ1 Euro 5 DPD 130Kw – 380/430Nm engine (I know it’s there I’ve seen it) that gives a fuel economy of 7.9L/100km combined and is linked up to a 6 Speed Transmission.
So there you have it. A sleeker (pedestrian friendly) new look, improved interior, a smoother/quieter ride and a stronger (Euro 5) powertrain – We’re looking forward to getting the keys and fining something to tow
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