Pricing and specifications for New Zealand’s latest ute-cum-SUV — the Isuzu MU-X — have been confirmed.
Just one model of MU-X is set to be offered in local showrooms; the flagship LS-T four-wheel drive automatic. This is consistent with the outgoing MU-X, which has only been available in a single high-spec trim for several years.
The MU-X LS-T will be priced from $80,990, making it one of the most expensive entries in its class.
For reference, the flagship Toyota Fortuner Limited is priced from $59,990, and the Ford Everest Titanium from $79,990. LDV’s D90 four-wheel drive is almost half the price, at $44,990. And in the middle are the SsangYong Rexton SPR and Mitsubishi Pajero Sport VRX, priced at $67,990 and $68,990, respectively.
All of this comes atop of an all-new platform; the one shared between Isuzu’s MU-X and D-Max and the Mazda BT-50. If our experience of the D-Max is anything to go by, then the new MU-X should be much more refined than its predecessor.
The MU-X comes with the same 3.0-litre turbo-diesel four-cylinder and six-speed auto as its ute cousin, producing 140kW of power and 450Nm of torque and rated to tow 3500kg. It also features the same dashboard as the D-MAX, including the same nine-inch infotainment screen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
LED headlights and tail lights, 20-inch wheels, leather upholstery, USB ports for passengers in the rear, roof rails, dual-zone climate control, and rain-sensing wipers all come standard in the LS-T trim.
The model also gets the same comprehensive suite of active and passive safety technologies, inclusive of radar cruise control, autonomous emergency braking, and blind-spot monitoring. The model is yet to be tested by ANCAP, but should score the same five-star rating as its ute twin.
Isuzu says that space and comfort has improved inside, particularly for third-row passengers. They now get reclining seats and a boost in legroom, plus double-sealed doors, cup holders in all three rows, and additional sound proofing. This is part of a push to make the nameplate more comfortable all round, dovetailing with its premium pricing.