The new mu-X: Maxed out!

Tech, torque and a luxurious touch
Isuzu is pulling no punches with this stunning follow-up to its solid leisure SUV.
Staff Reporter
Auas Motors recently unveiled the much-anticipated second-generation Isuzu mu-X to great fanfare.

Based on the incoming Isuzu D-MAX bakkie, the introduction of the new mu-X follows the success of the outgoing model, and the My.Na Cars team had the pleasure of experiencing this marvellous new model in Tsumeb recently.

The second-generation mu-X boasts bold new styling, a larger and quieter cabin decked with luxurious materials, and next-generation driver assistance and safety features. Aimed at growing families who want a seven-seater that still fits their lifestyle needs, the mu-X offers comfort and convenience for up to seven adults with a cabin that is the largest in the segment. New safety and driver assistance features further make driving long distances a breeze. “The new mu-X is a massive step-up for Isuzu. It represents a shift in how customers will view vehicles in this segment in terms of ride quality, luxury and technology. The mu-X will not only attract more buyers in this segment but is likely to attract buyers from other segments as well,” Craig Uren, senior vice president of sales and marketing at Isuzu, said.

Strong, sleek and safe

The mu-X is one of the safest vehicles on the road with a five-star Australasian New Car Assessment Programme rating. The safety rating is driven by Isuzu’s innovative systems such as the addition of a centre airbag between the driver and the front passenger, a world first for the segment. The mu-X also benefits from the use of high tensile steel in key parts of the body structure, making it stronger for better occupant protection and driving performance while being lighter than the outgoing model.

The mu-X is powered by a new version of Isuzu’s formidable three-litre engine, matched to a slick shifting six-speed automatic gearbox. Isuzu engineers have paid particular attention to the engine’s performance in three key areas: Fuel consumption, power and engine noise. These tweaks have upped the unit’s performance to 140 kW, with 450 Nm of torque on deck for when things get sticky.

Bold new look

The new mu-X debuts Isuzu’s new look for its passenger vehicles, an expression of the brand’s bold identity and pursuit of luxury and exclusivity. Viewed from the front, the mu-X communicates precision and solid build quality, evidenced by the execution of new 'World Crossflow' front grille and intricate detail of the arrow shaped Bi-LED headlamps.

The headlamps follow an arrow signature design motif with long sharp outlines which further add to the overall high-quality upmarket appearance. The side profile of the mu-X is dominated by a signature line running from front to rear, linking the arrow motif headlamps with the rear light 3D winglets. This powerful character line emphasises the powerful, elegant lines of the body. The rear end combines an advanced look with an elegant yet solid stance. New tailgate badging harmonises with the new mu-X’s design language and presents a keen and elegant look. The rear lights and indicators are combined in a winglet design with precise LED details, which give a sense of depth when seen from behind.

All three models have new alloy wheels, with 20-inch wheels fitted to the top of the range Onyx model. LSE models are fitted with 18-inch alloy wheels, and the LS boasts 17-inch wheels.

Eight paint colours, including five new colours, are available: Splash White, Dolomite White, Onyx Black, Mercury Silver, Obsidian Gray, Red Spinel, Santos Brown and Sapphire Blue.

Larger, more refined cabin

Designed and engineered for long cross-country drives, the new Isuzu mu-X has an opulent and elegant cabin atmosphere with room for seven adults. The three-dimensional layout has a solid and elegant design with rich, fine, impressive materials. Gentle elegant lines are finished with layered soft touch materials, fine and impressive level of craftsmanship which is designed to appeal to all senses.

Layering of textures plus prominent stitching emphasises the thickness of materials. A visual and tactile sense of luxury is achieved by mixing multiple materials such as piano black surfaces, chrome highlights, aluminium and soft leather. The luxury atmosphere of the cabin is enhanced at night by the addition of ambient lighting in the door trim and a roof down light. Onyx and LSE models have a new seat design with eight-way power adjustable driver seat, including power lumber support adjustment in Onyx models. Top of the range models feature heated front seats and four-way power adjustment for the passenger seat. The new seats are wrapped in supple leather, cloth in the LS, and now have larger side bolsters for added comfort on twisty roads.

The mu-X has best in class hip, shoulder, head and leg room at a generous 915 mm for second row occupants. The second-row seats are 30 mm wider than those in the outgoing model. Onyx and LSE models have dual zone climate control with two HVAC units to provide individual temperature for each of the front seat occupants. Buttons for the aircon are designed and positioned for simplified use. All models have roof mounted aircon vents for second and third row occupants with separate fan speed control and air conditioning evaporator.

Interior noise levels have been reduced through door sealing structure improvement on the A-Pillar surrounding to improve wind noise. In addition, increased body stiffness and additional noise insulation have contributed to considerably lower cabin noise levels.

Isuzu’s Intelligent Driver Assistance System (IDAS) makes a debut in the technologically packed range-topping Onyx model. IDAS is a suite of passive and active safety systems which continuously monitor driving conditions and act autonomously to avoid a crash or minimise accident damage. IDAS functions through a windshield mounted stereo camera which monitors the road ahead of the vehicle and can detect and recognise vehicles, pedestrian, bicycles, obstacles, lane markings, illustrations, etc.

Evolution of excellence

The first-gen mu-X was a revelation; however, its styling did not have the mass appeal that this new version has in abundance. That coupled with its high level of specification, safety technology and interior comfort make the new mu-X absolutely impossible to ignore. Visit your nearest Auas Motors dealership to experience it yourself; you won’t be disappointed.