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Holden Rodeo

Isuzu Utility

1 Nov 1972

GENERAL MOTORS’ close affiliation with Isuzu resulted in many shared vehicles, but probably the most successful was its light-truck competitor to the all-conquering Toyota HiLux.

Sold globally as the Chevrolet LUV, Holden brought it in as the Isuzu LUV in late ’72, powered by a 1.6-litre OHC four-cylinder engine delivering around 50kW of power and 110Nm of torque.

With a 2600mm wheelbase and 1000kg payload and a strong four-speed manual gearbox driving the rear wheels, the vehicle quickly gained a reputation as a tough and reliable workhorse.

Changes in 1978 saw the range changed to the short-wheelbase KB20, new long-wheelbase KB25 model and four-wheel drive KB40 short-wheelbase, with the latter two in tray as well as pickup body styles.

A KBD25 and KBD40 diesel, using Isuzu’s bulletproof 45kW/113Nm 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine, was also available.

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