Isuzu launches the new mu-X, full model changed for the first time in seven years
Isuzu Motors Limited (headquartered in Shinagawa, Tokyo; Masanori Katayama, President and Representative Director; hereinafter referred to as Isuzu) will start selling the full model-changed mu-X, a passenger pickup vehicle (PPV), on Nov. 9 in Thailand before expanding in other markets.
The mu-X is a variant of the Isuzu D-MAX (hereafter referred to as D-MAX), a pickup truck which was full model changed last year. Its body-on-frame construction, a unique PPV feature, is highly evaluated for its rough road running performance, durability and towing capability mainly in Thailand, the ASEAN region, and Australia, and enjoys high customer rating in more than 60 countries around the world. The high evaluation for the mu-X in Thailand includes the reception of the Car of the Year Best PPV Award two consecutive years since 2019, and also the PPV Product Innovation Award in 2020.
This full model change is based on the engineering concept of Robust and Exclusive, with the aim to deliver customers a pleasure of owing the new mu-X through enhancing the comfort and luxury feel at a level required for a PPV while maintaining Isuzu's unique strengths: reliable durability; fuel economy; and safety performance.
Isuzu has been focusing on strengthening the LCV business, which was part of the Midterm Business Plan announced in May, 2018. With this full model change, Isuzu will launch a product with a wide range of variations that can satisfy the diversified customer needs, also boost the sales based upon the business foundation built on the previous Midterm Business Plan, and lead the market in the LCV business category.
*Image of Ultimate 4X4 AT
Below are the main features of the new mu-X.
- ·Core structure
- With a lean and rational package layout for the efficient usage of space to balance both inhabitability and styling, the cabin space, which has been highly evaluated, is even more spacious. By adopting a plastic liftgate, an extensive use of high-tensile steel plates and a streamlined assembly structure, the light and firm vehicle body is successfully made available.
- In addition to the reliable durability, fuel economy performance, and towing capability,
inherited from D-MAX, in-cabin noise, driving stability, and riding comfort have improved.
- ·Comfort and features
- With the enhanced interior touch and feel, and riding comfort in the seats, the new mu-X
achieved a sufficient inhabitability and comfortable in-cabin space. New features such as
electric parking, brake and electric liftgate are equipped for improved operability. Additionally, a 20-inch tire is now available as an option.
The new mu-X is engineered with a unique PPV feature of body-on-frame construction, possessing both robustness and luxury feel, to convey the joy and pride of ownership to the customers and make them want to drive endlessly with a sense of exaltation.
- With the concept of Emotional and Solid, the new mu-X consists of a body focusing on its underbody strength and a relaxing and elegant cabin, and has a sporty and dignified style. The new mu-X projects a sophisticated premium image because of the Bi-LED projectors installed on the front face, combined with the sharp-looking headlamps and the front grill with detail-oriented formative design. The rear end is designed to give an innovative look by the tail lamps with a sharp formative design developed through detail-focused engineering.
- With the concept of Solid and Elegant, the instrument panel stretches across the cabin with a large-size display located at the center, and consists of an accentuated formative design extending to right and left, and a seamless formative design from the center cluster to the floor console in order to project a powerful and premium image through its styling unique to PPV. In addition to the formative design focusing on details such as the gauges and switches, uncompromising efforts such as the combination of decorative materials were made for the touch and feel of the interior to create a high-quality interior space.
Summary of changes:
- The 4 X 4 model is equipped with two types of control modes in the traction control (TCS) with the aim to gain optimal traction based on the road surface condition. In addition to the normal mode used on normal roads, the rough terrain mode is available for the driver to be able to run on various types of road surfaces, enhancing its run-through performance, especially on slippery roads.
- ·Rear suspension
- The level of roll rigidity has significantly improved in the 5-link rear suspensions, thanks to the elevated roll center by relocating the lateral link, and the enhanced stabilizer by widening its effective width. On top of this, together with the front suspensions engineered in the D-MAX development, the driving stability and riding comfort have improved.
- For the rear brake, a disc brake with a motor-on caliper type electric parking brake is standard on all models. It can maintain high braking stability while enhancing the usability by the electric parking brake's automatic function.
- By optimizing the locations of the cross-members, the torsional rigidity improved, and the weight became lighter. The repair cost reduction in the event of a light collision in vehicle's rear side is made possible by using the rear-end cross-member as the bumper beam.
- ·Fuel tank
- The tank capacity has been increased from 65 to 80 litter, making the cruising distance longer.
- ·Vehicle body
- By making the pillars in the rear-half body closed-section circular structures and strengthening the joints between parts, the body's bending rigidity and torsional rigidity improved. Furthermore, by controlling the load transfer in the event of a collision, the shock is dispersed and absorbed, securing the safety zones to protect passengers.
The use of 980 MPa high-tensile steel plates made it possible to bring the strength and body rigidity to high levels while keeping it lightweight at the same time. By increasing the dynamic rigidity of the cab-mount fixing portions, the muffled noise caused by solid propagation has been reduced. Moreover, foamed material is installed inside the pillars in order to enhance NV (Noise and Vibration) performance, mitigating noise entrance into the vehicle.
The adoption of a plastic lift-gate made the vehicle lighter and gives the rearview a sharp look. As an option feature, a power liftgate is available, enhancing the usability of the vehicle.
- ·Interior finishing
- For the instrument panel, the suitable method and material were selected in order to bring the styling concept into reality, which led to the premium look and feel appropriate for a PPV.
For the second-row seats, the optimization of the shape improved the riding comfort, and the adoption of slide-out cup holders and the operability improvement in the seat levers enhanced the usability.
For the third-row seats, the inhabitability, which had been highly evaluated, were further improved by adopting a reclining mechanism and creating more leg room.
For the center console, the usability was improved by introducing an electric parking brake and removing the hand brake lever.
The interior space became more luxurious because of the addition of an ambient light.
- Vehicle type: 4X4 AT with 4JJ3 engine for Thailand
Specification item Grade: Ultimate Overall length(mm) 4,850 Overall width(mm) 1,870 Overall height(mm) 1,875 Wheelbase(mm) 2,855 Tread (front/rear)(mm) 1,570 Minimum turning radius(m) 5.7 Tire 265/50R20 Engine
Displacement(cc) 2,999 Max. power(kW/rpm) 140/3,600 Max. torque(Nm/rpm) 450/1,600-2,600 Transmission 6AT Vehicle curb mass(kg) 2,155 CO2 emissions(g) 194