Isuzu Motors South Africa has injected five automatic options into its D-MAX light commercial range at the same time the Port Elizabeth factory is ramping up to start production of the all-new D-MAX, scheduled for the latter half of next year.
Headlining the expanded product portfolio is the Isuzu D-MAX 250 X-Rider, which is now available in a five-speed automatic transmission for the first time. This complements the existing five-speed manual derivatives, available in two and four-wheel drive.
Isuzu has also introduced the five-speed automatic transmission to the mid-range D-MAX 250 LE, as well as the workhorse-oriented D-MAX 250 Hi-Ride model.
Also new to the Double Cab range in a Hi-Ride trim-level is the addition of a 3,0-litre automatic model matched with a 6-speed automatic transmission.
“Buying trends in the bakkie segment are changing rapidly, and we have seen a major upswing in the demand for automatic gearboxes in recent years,” says Dominic Rimmer, Senior Vice President, Technical Operations at Isuzu Motors South Africa (IMSAf).
“The introduction of the six-speed automatic transmissions in the D-MAX 3,0-litre models in 2018 was extremely well received, and we are delighted to now offer automatic gearbox options on our D-MAX 250 models, from our X-Rider model to the mid-level LE and the Hi-Ride which is ideally suited to our commercial vehicle customers,” Rimmer adds.
“The five-speed automatic gearbox has been developed to suit the performance characteristics of Isuzu’s 2,5-litre intercooled turbo-diesel engine.”
The D-MAX 250 engine produces 100 kW of power at 3 400 r/min, while maximum torque output of 320 Nm is available between 1 800 r/min and 2 800 r/min. Combined cycle fuel consumption is rated at 8,1 l/100 km for the automatic models, dependent on driving style.
As with the five-speed manual derivatives, the D-MAX 250 Auto’s towing capacity is 2 100 kg for a braked trailer and therear load compartment is capable of carrying just more than 1 ton.
The X-Rider’s design cues, which set it apart in the D-MAX range, include a striking black finish for the front bumper and radiator grille, complemented by an assertive red Isuzu badge taking pride of place up front. Projector-style headlamps with integrated LED daytime running lights give the X-Rider real on-road presence.
The B-pillars, tubular side steps and sports bar also receive the black treatment, along with X-Rider decals that reaffirm the character of this model. Diamond-cut 18-inch alloy rims with a stunning two-tone silver and black colour scheme, topped off with red Isuzu decals on the centre wheel caps, further enhance the aggressive look of this model.
The X-Rider theme continues throughout the cabin, incorporating black leather bucket seats with contrasting red stitching and the X-Rider logo embroidered on the headrests.
Safety features include anti-lock brakes with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist System (BAS), Electronic Stability Control (ESC) with Traction Control, as well as Hill Start Assist (HSA) and Hill Descent Control (HDC).
Occupant protection is provided by means of driver and passenger crash bags, seatbelt pretensioners, side impact protection bars and a collapsible steering column. Remote-controlled central locking is standard, along with remote keyless entry, an anti-theft alarm system and transponder immobiliser. A Bluetooth-enabled audio system is provided, linked to six speakers.
Despite its entry-level status, the Hi-Ride is equipped with an impressive range of safety and security features that closely matches the X-Rider, but with more basic and durable trim finishes and 16-inch steel rims in line with its working role.
The mid-range LE lifts the D-MAX a couple of notches from the Hi-Ride models, with the addition of front fog lamps with chrome bezels, an Anthracite-coloured grille, colour-coded mirrors and door handles and 16-inch alloy wheels. Additional features added to the LE model include an ultrasonic alarm system, cruise control and an eight-inch touchscreen-controlled multimedia audio system.
All Isuzu D-MAX models come standard with Isuzu Complete Care, comprising a 5-year/120 000 km bumper-to-bumper warranty and Isuzu Roadside Assistance, a 5-year/unlimited km anti-corrosion warranty and a five-year/90 000 km Service Plan. Service intervals are every 15 000 km/12 months. Extended cover can be purchased for Roadside Assistance, Service Plans and Maintenance Plans.
Isuzu D-Max 250 Auto model range:
|D-MAX 250 HO EXTENDED CAB HI-RIDE AUTO||R 403,200.00|
|D-MAX 250 HO DOUBLE CAB HI-RIDE AUTO||R 435,300.00|
|D-MAX 250 HO DOUBLE CAB LE AUTO||R 459,000.00|
|D-MAX 300 DOUBLE CAB HI-RIDE AUTO||R 464,100.00|
|D-MAX 250 HO DOUBLE CAB X-RIDER AUTO||R 474,700.00|