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Isuzu updates MU-X with new drivetrain, more kit

Grunt work: The new Isuzu MU-X engine develops 50Nm more torque than before but uses less fuel and meets Euro 5 emissions standards.

Higher spec, lower running costs help justify $1300 price hike for Isuzu MU-X range


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10 Feb 2017

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 premium.

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 visits remains.

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 $50.

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.

2017 Isuzu MU-X pricing*
LS-M (a)$41,800(+$1300)
LS-U (a)$43,800(+$1300)
LS-T (a)$47,500(+$1300)
LS-M (a)$49,100(+$1300)
LS-U (a)$51,100(+$1300)
LS-T (a)$54,800(+$1300)
*Excludes on-road costs

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