ISUZU Ute has applied many of the changes from its facelifted D-Max one-tonner
to the MU-X large SUV range, headlined by a more efficient and torquier Euro 5
emissions-compliant version of the brand’s 3.0-litre turbo-diesel engine and an
upgrade to six-speed manual and automatic transmissions.
Unlike the refreshed D-Max, styling remains unchanged on the MU-X but it gains
many of the ute’s standard equipment upgrades including range-wide reversing
cameras, hill-descent control and touchscreen infotainment systems with
eight-speaker audio, along with extra on-board USB sockets.
Enhanced underfloor insulation is designed to reduce noise entering the cabin
and reduce levels of vibration and harshness.
Prices have increased $1300 across the MU-X range, which now opens at $41,800
plus on-road costs for the LS-M 4x2 automatic and maxes out at $54,800 for the
LS-T 4x4 automatic.
As before, all 4x2 variants are auto-only, while each 4x4 – except the
auto-only LS-T – is available with a manual. Entry to a 4x4 MU-X starts at
$47,000 plus on-roads for an LS-M manual, with the automatic carrying a $2100
Significant revisions to Isuzu’s proven 3.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel
engine have ensured Euro 5 emissions compliance while increasing torque output
by 50Nm to 430Nm.
Peak power remains at 130kW and fuel efficiency has improved five per cent,
with official combined consumption rated at 8.0 litres per 100 kilometres for
the LS-M 4x2, with all others at 8.1L/100km.
Two new six-speed transmissions and a redesigned differential rated for the new
engine’s increased torque output have also contributed to the fuel savings,
with further running cost reductions coming from service intervals extended
from six months to annually, although the 10,000km limit between maintenance
Isuzu has also introduced a five-year, 50,000km capped-price program claimed to
reduce maintenance costs by 18 per cent over the pre-update MU-X.
At the time of writing, the first service under the plan costs $200, with the
second priced at $400, the third at $260, the fourth at $590 and the fifth just
Isuzu claims the first service is the second lowest-priced in the market, while
the $50 fifth interval is by far the cheapest.
Entry level LS-M variants come with a 7.0-inch touchscreen with USB
connectivity and Bluetooth streaming, a reversing camera and rear parking
sensors, manual air-conditioning, 16-inch alloy wheels with all-terrain tyres
and a full-size steel spare, body-coloured door mirrors and handles, gunmetal
grey grille and projector headlights.
The mid-spec LS-U adds satellite navigation, climate control with rear air
vents, rear privacy glass, 17-inch alloys with highway terrain tyres and a
full-size alloy spare, front fog lights, a chrome grille, door mirrors and door
handles and a shark fin roof antennal.
Flagship LS-T grade includes leather upholstery, a 10.0-inch rear entertainment
system, keyless entry with push-button start, six-way electric driver’s seat
adjustment, roof rails, a tailgate spoiler and chrome exhaust tip.