The Isuzu MU-X has officially arrived in South Africa, with the local range of the seven-seater SUV comprising two derivatives (one rear-wheel drive and the other all-paw) at launch.
The KB-based MU-X, a cousin of the Chevrolet Trailblazer that is no longer offered in South Africa, joins a segment that includes the big-selling Toyota Fortuner, the increasingly popular Ford Everest and the fresh-faced Mitsubishi Pajero Sport.
Both derivatives in the new MU-X range employ a 3,0-litre turbodiesel mill (rather than the Trailblazer’s 144 kW/500 N.m 2,8-litre oil-burner) tuned to deliver 130 kW and 380 N.m, and linked to a six-speed automatic transmission.
The MU-X 3,0 4x2 model is priced at R568 000 (for the sake of comparison, the rear-wheel-drive Toyota Fortuner 2,8GD-6 costs R583 800), while the flagship MU-X 3,0 4x4 comes in at R629 100 (the Fortuner 2,8GD-6 4x4 auto is R646 800).
Standard features include aluminium side-steps, 18-inch alloys, privacy glass and LED rear combination lamps. The climate control system, meanwhile. caters for front and rear occupants.
The standard infotainment system (with satellite navigation, Bluetooth connectivity, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality) is linked to a 9-inch colour touchscreen display. Front and rear USB slots are also included, along with an auxiliary iPod input and HDMI port. Leather trim is standard for the seats, with the driver’s pew offering six-way electric adjustment. Keyless entry is also part of the package.
Safety features include ABS with EBD, emergency brake assist, electronic stability control, traction control and hill start assist, as well as dual front, side and full-length curtain airbags. A reversing camera is also included, along with a factory-fitted immobiliser and alarm system.
The body-on-frame MU-X boasts a five-link rear suspension arrangement, with a braked towing capacity of 3 000 kg. A five-year/120 000 km warranty and a five-year/90 000 km service plan (the latter with intervals of 15 000 km) come standard.
Ryan has spent most of his career in online media, writing about everything from sport to politics and other forms of crime. But his true passion – reignited by a 1971 Austin Mini Mk3 still tucked lifeless in a dark corner of his garage – is of the automotive variety.