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Isuzu D-MAX X-Rider 3.0 TD automatic

Isuzu is doing very well in terms of sales here in South Africa. If you consider that the company really only has two cars in the market, obviously ex

By Thami Masemola on 24 Aug 2020
Isuzu is doing very well in terms of sales here in South Africa. If you consider that the company really only has two cars in the market, obviously excluding trucks. The D-MAX (with variants) and MU-X are keeping the Isuzu flag flying, and looking at their sales numbers, this is quite impressive. And so in order to keep the buying public interested, special edition models and updates are often launched. Enter the new D-MAX X-Rider 3.0 TD automatic.

The X-Rider series was launched in 2016 and was more of a differentiator for the popular double cab bakkie. Although it carried existing powertrains in terms of engines and gearboxes, it really stood out where looks were concerned. Unfortunately, it was only available in manual, which is becoming a declining choice for the higher-end consumer who requires the better fuel consumption and more relaxed driving experience offered by automatic transmissions. Earlier this year the first automatic X-Rider was launched with a 2.5-litre turbo diesel engine. This time X-Rider is applied to the trusty company 3.0-litre turbo motor.

“Based on the popularity of the X-Rider,” says Dominic Rimmer, Executive, Technical Services at Isuzu Motors South Africa, “we felt it would make sense to match this nameplate with our most powerful engine, while retaining the attributes which make the X-Rider so popular. The 3 litre X-Rider has an imposing presence on the road with a rugged and sporty look which sets it apart from regular D-MAX models.”

So what are these standout features that make the D-MAX X-Rider 3.0 TD automatic look different? Several actually, including the red X-Rider logo in several places, black running boards, a black sports bar behind the rear window, black tailgate handle with a rear view reversing camera, a tow bar, black roof rails and 18-inch alloy wheels with all-terrain tyres. Buyers can also order black alloys instead, for free. The vehicle is only being sold in three colours, namely Pull Me Over Red (our favourite name), Summit White and Switchblade Silver.

Inside one finds a 20.3cm touch screen infotainment system, a multifunction steering wheel, electric windows all around, electrically-adjustable side mirrors, air conditioning, air cooled cup holders for driver and front passenger, a large centre storage console and others. The red stitching around the leather surfaces, the letter X on the front doors and X-Rider logo on the headrests are highlights.

Power is sourced from the 3.0-litre turbo diesel engine that produces a maximum of 130kW of power at 3 600rpm, as well as torque of 380Nm between 1 800 and 2 800rpm. The big news is of course the availability of a 6-speed automatic transmission for this model, which makes driving it that much simpler. Keep in mind that the X-Rider is a 4x2, although it does have a rear differential lock and a braked trailer towing capacity of 3 500kg. The fuel tank takes up to 80 litres of diesel and Isuzu claims an average consumption of 7.5 litres per 100km.

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