Yesterday we had an awesome day out at Groenkloof Nature Reserve’s 4×4 trail with the Isuzu KB X-Rider Double Cab. Access to the 4×4 trail is R120 (plus an additional R40 entrance fee per person). You can opt to do the obstacles or stick to the tarred/gravel road which can also be done with a normal car. #isuzukb #isuzu #kb #isuzukbxrider #doublecab #xrider #nature #offroad #4×4 #bakkie #ute #nature #river #trees #bakkie #pickup #idotourism #wedotourism #shotleft
By Amanda Mfuphi
It came as no surprise that when General Motors decided to exit the South African market, the Japanese decided to keep the Isuzu bakkie in South Africa. The Isuzu brand has been in South Africa for decades and South Africans simply love it, whether in the KB Single Cab, Extended Cab or the KB Double cab. Interestingly for South Africans the Isuzu vehicles embody both hard work and adventure.
We recently had the Isuzu X-Rider KB 250 on review. The Isuzu X-Rider KB 250 is based on Isuzu’s entry-level KB 250 Hi-Rider Double Cab model, but the X-Rider has immediate distinguishing features. The exterior of the Isuzu X-Rider KB 250 is littered with the X-Rider badge, which is on the sports bar, the back door panel and both front door panels. The play of the colour red in the Isuzu X-Rider KB 250 is quite striking and adds to the visual enhancements of the car. The X-Rider we had on review came with 18-inch diamond-cut alloy wheels; black bumper guard; a huge Isuzu badge in red to contrast the black bumper guard; fog lights; sports bar; tubular side steps with the X-Rider badge. The Isuzu X-Rider KB 250 looks as mean as it drives.
The inside of the X-Rider is not as impressive in relation to its infotainment system. The Isuzu X-Rider presents the old school sound system in that it does not have a fancy colour screen or even a small one that come standard in most modern bakkies. However, the X-Rider does come standard with the crucial features such as Bluetooth connectivity and an Aux, and USB port to play your music and charge your smart phone. The seats of the X-Rider are comfortable and quite visually appealing. The X-Rider comes standard with leather seats that have red stitching. This stitching is carried over to the leather steering wheel and the gear lever. Even inside the X-Rider, you are reminded that you are not in a normal Isuzu KB 250 Double Cab, as the headrests are embodied with the X-Rider badge and the inside side door panel trim also bears the “X” badge. Aside from the infotainment system, the interior of the X-Rider is practical.
The Isuzu X-Rider KB 250 is comfortable inside, the back passengers have sufficient legroom. The X-Rider has bottle holders in the door mouldings while a retractable drinks holder is at the driver’s and front passenger’s disposal. The driver’s seat is elevated perfectly to ensure that the driver has a sufficient view of the road and any obstructions ahead. The X-Rider comes standard with electric windows for all four windows and a decent air conditioning system that could withstand the heat we experienced on our trip to Venda.
We took the Isuzu X-Rider KB 250 to Venda over the Freedom Day long weekend for a wedding and got to experience the bakkie’s leisure side as much as it much loved for its workhorse status. I must admit when I initially drove the car, I was not impressed with the drive of the vehicle as it appeared a bit stiff and stubborn in gear change ups or downs and getting to gear 5 was a chore. For instance, it does not allow for the smooth gear changes that you would want to encounter in those sticky situations where you need to execute a quick overtaking manoeuvre. This changed when the car got warmer and all fired up. The drive of the X-Rider did get better. As I got to explore the N4 to Venda and the drive become smoother. Overall, I thought the drive of the X-Rider was relatively good.
The Isuzu X-Rider KB 250 we had on review is powered by a 2.5-litre turbodiesel engine that produces 100 kW and 320 Nm of torque. The engine is quite noisy at the initial stages of the drive but eventually settles down on the open road. The Isuzu X-Rider has sufficient power to carry its big body and I had no problems on the open road to overtake vehicles, even on inclines.
The one major downside of this vehicle is the lack of a parking distance control system. The advantages of its size soon become a big disadvantage. You have to be extremely careful when backing out of almost any space, especially tight parking lots.
The Isuzu X-Rider KB 250 also comes with some standard safety features such as ABS, EBD, Brake Assist, Electronic Stability Control with Traction Control and Hill Start Assist. There are only 2 airbags fitted in the vehicle for the driver and front passenger.
The Isuzu KB X-Rider is priced at R454,100.00 and is sold with a 5-year/120 000km warranty and a 5-year/90 000km service plan.
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