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Isuzu’s MU-X SUV gets upgraded safety features, design tweaks
Isuzu’s bakkies are celebrated icons in South Africa, but the brand’s SUVs are not quite as popular.
Since launching locally two years ago, Isuzu’s MU-X has been incapable of significantly impacting the market share of its dominant rival, the Toyota Fortuner. Despite this, MU-X offers something to those gravel travel customers who need seven-seats, but don’t wish to be part of the mass Fortuner movement.
Attempting to add some sales traction to its SUV as South Africa eases out of lockdown, Isuzu has applied a design update to its MU-X range. It features new grille, which is bolder, framed by bi-LED headlights and fog lights housed in darkened bezels.
Isuzu has applied similar styling updated to the MU-X’s rear, with a colour-coded upper bumper and new taillight illumination pattern.
Inside there has been liberal application of piano-black detailing to many touch surfaces. Although this high-gloss interior finish is appealing in other markets, a dusty environment such as South Africa makes its annoyingly maintenance intensive to keep clean.
Mechanically the MU-X range is still powered by Isuzu’s proven three-litre turbodiesel engine, which boosts 130kW and 380Nm. Customers have an option of 4×2 of 4×4 drivetrains, although there is no longer a manual-shifting option.
All MU-X modes are now six-speed automatics and come equipped with Eaton lockable rear-differentials, to improve traction in slipper or sandy conditions.
The most notable upgrade applied to Isuzu’s new MU-X is a brake override safety system. During an emergency stop, it stalls accelerator response, if both throttle and brake pedals are pressed simultaneously.
Isuzu’s new MU-X is available in seven colours and retails at R630 400 for the 4×2. Those customers who require true all-terrain driving ability, have option on the 4×4 version, at R698 200.