The all new Isuzu D Max was launched in July 2012 in five specification levels and three body configurations, two transmission and one engine choice. The All-New Isuzu D-MAX builds on its reputation of reliability and economy with new levels of performance, safety and comfort across the entire range.
Prices start from around $29,200 RDAP for the 4×2 single cab chassis through to around $54,000 for the highly featured LS Terrain dual cab ute version which represents outstanding value.
The revised body shape is not only efficient when it comes to reducing wind noise but allows more internal space than before. The front seat occupants have adequate room but the rear passengers are a little cramped if they are anywhere near tall.
Dash layout works well and there are some really clever and practical touches like the shelf under the steering wheel, stalk controlled MFD and the pull out cup holders on each side of the dash. The only problem is that they face the vents so they can cool coffee a little etc.
The entire D-MAX range now also comes equipped with a host of added safety benefits, including 4-channel 4-sensor Anti-skid Brake System (ABS) with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD), Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Traction Control System (TCS) and Brake Assist (BA), along with six (6) airbags (dual front, curtain and side). A high-strength tailor blank welded passenger safety cell also increases occupant safety.
The All-New D-MAX range is powered by a new highly refined fuel efficient 3.0litre turbo common rail diesel engine. This advanced Euro4-compliant unit generates 130kW and a peak torque output of 380Nm at 1800rpm. The torque is delivered across a flat curve through a large majority of the rev-range to aid drivability and ease of towing.
All-New Isuzu D-MAX also introduces a new “Terrain Command” 4WD select dial, allowing the driver to adjust between two-and four-wheel drive modes while travelling at speeds of up to 100km/h.
Even though the engine is a little lower in power than some of its competitors, the delivery of power in a linear fashion overcomes any shortfall you might perceive. The other thing to note about the Isuzu D Max is that the engine is built to robust specifications. These engines are known to last for many hundreds of thousands of kilometres, and they are very economical. So while the D Max engine doesn’t have the specifications of say the Ranger, on the road and especially off road there is always more than enough power available.
On road handling is good if a little bumpy but off road is where the D Max shines. It performed effortlessly on the sand, loved the rough stuff on fire trails and forging new tracks and towing proved a non issue. In fact the D Max is one of our favourite towing utes.
Isuzu D Max utes are outstanding value for money, robust and tough, with under stressed engines and love the rough 4WD trails. In short they are ideal outback tourers for 4WD enthusiasts and for towing that camper trailer to your favourite destination.
What is Good
• Off Road ability
• Robust and tough
• Excellent Value
What is Not so Good
• Interior a little bland
• Bluetooth reception
• Dual push TCS deactivation
Model Isuzu D Max LS Terrain
Model Price $54,160 RDAP
Engine 3.0 litre turbo-diesel 4 Cyl
Drivetrain 5sp Auto ‘shift on fly’ 4X4
Power 130 Kw @ 3,600 rpm
Torque 380 Nm @ 1,800 rpm
Safety N/A Star ANCAP
CO2 Emissions g/km 214
Green Vehicle Rating 2 1/2 Star
Fuel (ADR comb) 10.0 L/100Km
Tow Capacity – Max 3000 kg
Tow Ball Rating 300 kg
Warranty 3yr/ 100,000 km Roadside assist
Overall OzRoamer Rating 74/100
Behind the Wheel 7
Ride & Handling 7
Fit for Purpose 8
Towing Ability 7
Off Road Ability 8
Value for Money 9